Position of the Jewish Minority in the First Czechoslovak Republic with an Emphasis on the Slovak Territory

The text can be divided into two parts: in the first part, we focus on the principles of protection of minority rights after the First World War which were addressed by the Paris Peace Conference (1919), and in the second part, we deal with the Jewish minority in Slovakia within the Czechoslovak Republic. According to the original proposals, the protection of racial, national, and religious minorities was to be incorporated in the statute of the League of Nations, but this concept was not accepted. Subsequently, the protection of minorities was included in peace treaties with defeated and newly formed states. The Czechoslovak Republic was committed to provide protection of life and liberty to all citizens, regardless of their origin, citizenship, language, race or religion. The Republic agreed that regulations concerning persons belonging to racial, religious or linguistic minorities were of international coverage and guarantees of the League of Nations. With its constitution and laws, the CSR created a framework within which individual minorities built both their relationship with the republic and their own identity in the new state. Further in the text there is a focus on the Jewish minority in Slovakia within the First Czechoslovak Republic. The Republic was among the first in the world to allow declaring Jewish nationality. This section focuses on the various layers of Jewish identity: religion, nation, language, relationship to Zionism, and political organization. The Republic enabled the Jews to live a full religious, social, political and cultural life.