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Municipal authorities of Zagreb in the interwar period (1918-1941)


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Hutinec, Goran. (2011). Municipal authorities of Zagreb in the interwar period (1918-1941). PhD Thesis. Filozofski fakultet u Zagrebu, Department of History. [mentor Goldstein, Ivo].

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In the Introduction (9-12) and chapter Historiography on interwar Zagreb (13-18), the author briefly explains the basic concepts of the modern urban history, and their applicability to the case of Zagreb. He also lists the results of previous research on the topic of city of Zagreb in the period between two world wars, and archival sources relevant for understanding of the situation in the city after the First World War and the historical processes that influenced its transformation into a modern urban center. Chapter City of Zagreb in the context of Yugoslavia (19-34) deals with the changes in geopolitical context at the end of World War I and the consequences of the disintegration of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy. The establishment of the Yugoslav state improved position of Zagreb in the political, economic and cultural sense. However, the establishment of the dictatorship of King Alexander in late twenties and the economic activity of the regime during the Great Depression managed to curb further economic growth of Zagreb. In the next chapter the author deals with the topic of Institutions of local administration, such as the city Council, mayor's office etc. (35-69). In this chapter the author describes the process of harmonization of different legislative traditions in the Yugoslav state and the changes it caused in the structure of the Zagreb city administration during the thirties, and also after the establishment of the Croatian Banovina in 1939. The last part of this chapter is devoted to attempts at territorial expansion of the city in the years before the outbreak of the Second World War, which occurred at the insistence of the surrounding municipalities which were interested in joining the city's territory. Political events are described i the next two chapters: Political situation 1918-1929 (70-106) and Political events in the city 1929-1941 (107-162). The division of this complex issue into two sections is explained with changes caused by establishment of a dictatorial regime of King Alexander in the beginning of 1929. During this period, the mayor was no longer elected by the City Council, but by king himself. Initially, a small group of old representatives in the city council tried to cooperate with the new regime, but steady rise of resistance to dictatorship and the growing activities of the Ustasha movement terminated that cooperation. Despite numerous requests for local elections, democratic procedures weren't reinstated even after King Alexander's death, nor after the establishment of the Croatian Banovina, when the new Peasant-Democrat coalition entered into government and took over control over the city. Chapter Activities of municipal enterprises (163-248) includes an overview of the activities of city utilities' companies (water ducts, gas and power stations, tram and bus companies), and the actions the City Savings Bank, which provided the financial foundation for development of the city in the whole interwar period. A special emphasis is set on the period of economic crisis in the first half of the thirties, when the actions of City Savings Bank prevented the collapse of then heavily indebted and almost overburdened city government. Part of the chapter is devoted to an attempt to restructure municipal enterprises into a single company with a unique management and accounting in the early thirties, as well as the successful resistance to such plans. Chapter Zagreb municipal authorities influence on modernization and expansion of the city (249-321) deals with the demographic, economic and political basis of the rapid expansion of Zagreb during the interwar period, and its consequences. It primarily works on the transformation of the city into a modern urban center. Unlike the earlier period when modernity manifested itself primarily in the economic and cultural area, during the interwar period Zagreb evolved into a modern city in full meaning of that word. This was evident in all fields of human activity - from the reorganization of municipal authority, reorganization of traffic, changes in linguistic and customary identity of the city, as well as the impact of modernization on physical outlook of the city (slums of old Upper Town, concurrent emergence of slums in the suburbs, rapid urbanization of the suburban villages etc.). The paper ends with a Conclusion (330-335) and a List of sources and bibliographic reference (336-345).

Item Type: PhD Thesis
Uncontrolled Keywords: Zagreb, lokalna samouprava, gradonačelnik, Gradsko zastupstvo, korupcija, Gradska štedionica, Gradska električna centrala i plinara, Gradski vodovod, međuratno doba
Subjects: History
Departments: Department of History
Supervisor: Goldstein, Ivo
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2014 09:53
Last Modified: 09 Jul 2014 13:09

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