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Original scientific paper

Was Županov Right? Testing the Origin and Persistence of the Egalitarian Syndrome

Vuk Vuković ; University of Oxford, Oxford
Aleksandar Štulhofer ; Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Zagreb
Ivan Burić ; Croatian Studies, Zagreb

Full text: croatian pdf 240 Kb

page 207-225

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The egalitarian syndrome theory (Županov, 1970) is the most
significant Croatian theory of societal development. As
opposed to Županov’s interpretation according to which the
egalitarian syndrome (ES) is defined by the legacy of the premodern
agrarian culture which was further embedded under
socialism, some critics of this theory believe that the values
which form the ES are a reaction to the costs of the post-
-socialist transition and the war for independence. In this
paper, these two confronted explanations of the origin of the
ES are empirically tested and arguments for the persistence
of its specific set of values are questioned. The results of the
multivariate regression analysis on the county level show that
the share of agricultural population from the end of the
1960s and the beginning of the 1970s – and not the social
costs of war and transition in the 1990s – is a significant
predictor of the county level of ES at the beginning of 2016,
thus confirming the hypothesis of its persistence. The results
of this paper imply that the ES is an inherited set of values
which still affects everyday life in Croatia today, thus
aggravating its socioeconomic development.


egalitarian syndrome, persistence, societal development, Županov

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