Cultural-nationalist type

The parties and their manifestos which did not centered its political message around the concept of primordial exclusive and eternal nation but still emphasized high value of the national culture and preservation of its heritage are part of the second group. These parties were very sensitive to the external threats but they also stressed its pro European attitudes and respect for human rights and protection of minorities. We will refer to the approach embedded in the second group of manifestos as culturally – nationalistic. Despite these strongly assertive policies, the cultural-nationalist manifestos showed respect to the culture and traditions of the ethnic minorities living in Slovakia and considered them to be an integral part of the heritage of the whole country. Therefore as soon as the goal of protecting Slovak national interests was secured there was room for the support and nourishment of ethnic minorities and of their culture.

All three electoral documents falling into the cultural-nationalist group in many places emphasized tolerance and respect for minority rights and their freedoms, and at the same time they condemned racism and discrimination. A combination of these values with the cultural approach towards defining the nation described above is identifiable in the way both parties addressed the Roma minority and its social problems in their manifestos. They proposed policies aimed at “normalization” of the Roma population. Both parties were in favour of the establishment of special boarding schools for Roma pupils where they would be educated and raised in order to integrate into the Slovak population. These efforts do not mean that Smer-SD or ĽS-HZDS called for full cultural assimilation of the Roma population. The integration was meant primarily in terms of social and political issues – not cultural. However, if some Roma abandon their cultural heritage and they feel themselves to be Slovaks it will be fully acceptable for the cultural-nationalist approach to count them as members of the Slovak nation.