Cities and Metropolitan Culture in the late 19th century Habsburg Empire

A seminar hosted by CEFRES young researcher Filip Herza

Time & Venue: every Monday 5-6:20 pm, FHS UK Jinonice building, room 2066
Lecturer: Mgr. Filip Herza – Charles University (FHS / CEFRES)
Language: English


The seminar focuses on cities of the fin-de-siécle Austro-Hungarian empire from the perspective of the recent urban history. In the first part of the course, we will study the process of industrialization and the emergence of the metropolitan culture in different capitals and regional centers of the Habsburg monarchy, from the capitals of Vienna and Budapest, to local urban centres such as Prague and Cracow. In the second part of the seminar, we will concentrate on particular aspects of the metropolitan culture and everyday life in the cities. Specifically we will study the production of urban spaces through different social and symbolical practices related to the social stratification of the Austro-Hungarian society, to the contemporary national movements and to the emergence of an international cosmopolitan culture in Europe. The seminar is offered for those interested in the urban history and in the history of the Central and Eastern Europe alike.

Program of individual sessions

  • 20. 2. Introduction: Cities and urban culture in the Austro-Hungarian empire 
  • 27.2. Industrialization: Vienna and Budapest
  • 6. 3. Architecture and city planing: Die Ringstraße and Vienna
  • 13. 3. City planing, hygiene and nationalism in Prague
  • 20. 3. Urban festivities and nationalism in Prague
  • 27. 3. Urban experiences (in Budapest)
  • 3. 4. Popular press and metropolitan identity (in Cracow)
  • 10. 4. Science in/and the City (of Vienna)
  • 17. 4. Moving between cities – technology and transportation (Bratislava/Pressburg/Poszóny)
  • 24. 4. Cities in war (Vienna)
  • 15. 5. Essay writing and final discussion