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Pat Lyons and Rita Kindlerová (eds.)

Contemporary Czech Society

Pat Lyons and Rita Kindlerová (eds.). 2016. Contemporary Czech Society. Prague: The Institute of Sociology of the Czech Academy of Sciences. 552 s. ISBN 978-80-7330-299-3.
  • Do Czechs want equality?
  • Are Czechs a nation of grumblers?
  • Are Czechs prejudiced?
  • How do Czechs spend their time?
  • Czexit?
  • What do Czechs think about migrants and do Czechs fear foreigners?

Price of the book 350 CZK or US$14 (552 pages)

The book is available from a number of online sources such as Amazon.com and AbeBooks.com

Amazon:  https://www.amazon.com/Contemporary-Czech-Society-Pat-Lyons/dp/8073302993

AbeBooks:  https://www.abebooks.com/servlet/BookDetailsPL?bi=22232203986&searchurl=...

Download a sample chapter here - Chapter 51: Are Czechs prejudiced?


About Contemporary Czech Society

Answers to these and dozens of other questions are used in this unique book to paint a broad interdisciplinary portrait of Czech society for an international audience. Using insights from economics, history, politics, psychology and sociology this book uses a question and answer format to explore how Czechs see themselves and others. Comparisons are made with other European societies and there is an exploration of how Czech social attitudes and behaviour have changed over time. This book shows that Czech society is complex as not all Czechs’ beliefs and values are consistent. This fact is important for understanding contemporary Czech society.


Contemporary Czech Society reveals how Czechs view themselves, their history, and their place in the modern world through a series of questions ranging from topics of nostalgia for communism to the possibility of ‘Czexit’ from the European Union. The chapters are lively and filled with fun facts as the authors place the Czech perspectives in the context of current academic research. This is an engaging read for anyone interested in understanding Czech culture and society.

― Mary Stegmaier, University of Missouri


Contemporary Czech Society is a must-read for anyone who wants to better understand this complex and captivating society. It provides an easy-to-read and rigorous analysis of the values, beliefs and preferences of Czech society over time on a range of related topics. Using evidence and insights from economics, history, political science, psychology and sociology, the authors present a rich picture of social change and continuity that calls into question many popular myths and interpretations of Czech society.

― David S. Siroky, Arizona State University


Are Czechs more satisfied with their lives today than under Communism? Is Czexit likely? Are Czechs a nation of grumblers? And just how many cultural anthropologists does a country really need? In a delightful ask-and-answer format, Pat Lyons and Rita Kindlerová use the latest data and social science methods to resolve important questions big and small. In the process they offer deeper insights that can help us understand not what it means to be a Czech but what it means to be a citizen of the contemporary world.

― Kevin Deegan-Krause, Wayne State University, Michigan


List of Chapters

Introduction Pat Lyons and Rita Kindlerová

Theory, methods, and structure Pat Lyons

Part 1: Economic Perspective

Chapter 1: Do Czechs know and trust official economic statistics? Pat Lyons 

Chapter 2: Do Czechs want equality? Pat Lyons

Chapter 3: What is the price of equality and inequality in Czech society? Pat Lyons

Chapter 4: Are there too many university graduates in the Czech Republic? Tomáš Doseděl

Chapter 5: What does undeclared work tell us about Czech Society? Pat Lyons

Chapter 6: Are illegal drugs and prostitution bad for Czech society? Pat Lyons

Chapter 7: What are the attitudes of Czechs towards climate change? Pat Lyons

Part 2: Historical Perspective

Chapter 8: Who voted for the Communists in the election of 1946? Pat Lyons

Chapter 9: Why did Czechs and Slovaks allow their leaders to dissolve Czechoslovakia in late 1992? Pat Lyons

Chapter 10: Are Czechs more satisfied with their lives today than under communism? Pat Lyons

Chapter 11: What is current public opinion towards the Velvet Revolution? Pat Lyons

Part 3: Political Science Perspective

Chapter 12: What does Czech “Miss Democracy” look like? Jaroslava Pospíšilová

Chapter 13: Are some Czechs in love with a political party? Pat Lyons

Chapter 14: Why do Czechs like non-politicians in politics? Jaroslava Pospíšilová

Chapter 15: Are Czechs nostalgic for life under communism? Aleš Kudrnáč

Chapter 16: Do Czechs care if ‘Big Brother’ is watching? Daniela Prokschová

Chapter 17: What is lustration and what does it tell us about Czech society? Pat Lyons

Chapter 18: Where are Czech voters created? Aleš Kudrnáč

Chapter 19: Should the Czech Republic introduce compulsory voting? Pat Lyons

Chapter 20: Can some Czechs correctly select election winners from looking at photos? Pat Lyons

Chapter 21: Are Czechs’ voting choices inherited? Pat Lyons

Chapter 22: What can be learned from analysing Czech election ballot papers? Pat Lyons

Chapter 23: Who has ‘nascent political ambition’ in the Czech Republic? Pat Lyons

Chapter 24: How to get elected to the Czech Parliament? Michal Kuděla

Chapter 25: Do Czech citizens recognize political parties’ logos and does it matter? Pat Lyons

Chapter 26: How many Czechs are “know nothings” when it comes to politics? Pat Lyons

Chapter 27: What is Czechs’ level of knowledge about refugees and asylum seekers, and is it important? Pat Lyons

Chapter 28: What does opposition to a US radar station tell us about Czech public opinion? Michaela Röschová

Chapter 29: What do volunteer Czech political scientists know? Pat Lyons

Chapter 30: Czexit? Pat Lyons

Part 4: Psychological Perspective

Chapter 31: What are the main personality traits of Czechs? Pat Lyons

Chapter 32: Do Czechs think they know more than they really do? Pat Lyons

Chapter 33: Why are some Czechs good forecasters? Pat Lyons

Chapter 34: Are attractive young Czechs intelligent? Pat Lyons

Chapter 35: What is the ‘climate of opinion’ in the Czech Republic? Pat Lyons

Chapter 36: What does the Stevens’ Power Law tell us about Czechs’ perceptions of the number of immigrants? Pat Lyons

Chapter 37: What does a study of a Czech internet user tell us? Pat Lyons

Part 5: Sociological Perspective

Chapter 38: Are Czech values unique? Pat Lyons

Chapter 39: Are Czechs a nation of grumblers? Daniel Prokop

Chapter 40: Is religion dead in the Czech Republic? Pat Lyons

Chapter 41: Why do Czechs mistrust their police and courts? Eva Krulichová

Chapter 42: Does the Czech Republic have a permissive society? Pat Lyons

Chapter 43: What is the nature of sexual behaviour in Czech society? Pat Lyons

Chapter 44: Is it possible to predict who will marry who in Czech society? Tomáš Katrňák and Barbora Hubatková

Chapter 45: Is marriage an outdated institution in the Czech Republic? Jana Klímová Chaloupková

Chapter 46: When do Czechs become adults? Petr Fučík

Chapter 47: Do older Czechs behave fairly toward younger and future generations? Pieter Vanhuysse

Chapter 48: Why is it unpopular to be old in the Czech Republic? Romana Trusinová

Chapter 49: Is there equal treatment of ethnic minorities in the Czech Republic? Daniel Prokop

Chapter 50: Why do Czechs fear foreigners? Daniel Prokop

Chapter 51: Are Czechs prejudiced? Pat Lyons

Chapter 52: Does Czechs’ use of the words “Roma” or “Gypsy” in daily conversation matter? Pat Lyons

Chapter 53: Why does it make sense to use computer simulation to study residential segregation in the Czech Republic? Pat Lyons

Chapter 54: What do Czechs think of newcomers? Yana Leontiyeva and Martin Vavra

Chapter 55: How do Czechs spend their time? Michaela Röschová

Chapter 56: What’s in a name? Michaela Röschová

Chapter 57: Did you know the Czech Republic is a nation of bookworms? Rita Kinderlová

Conclusion and cross-validation Pat Lyons and Rita Kindlerová

More information about the research project from which this book comes is available from http://promenyceskespolecnosti.cz/


intergenerational relations
migration and mobility
civil society
politics (and political attitudes)
social inequalities
elections (and polls)

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