The popularity and character of secular last rites in Czechoslovakia were admired by many other Communist countries in Central and Eastern Europe, at least in the 1950s and 1960s. The author questions this adulation through an analysis of the origins and development of secular funerals (and cremation) in the country, exposing its much earlier roots, misuse by the Communists and its dysfunctions following the fall of Communism. He maintains that there was a lack of ideological anchoring, i.e. a replenishment of the old religion was evident rather than replacement by Marxism which, in terms of funeral rites, failed to attract support from the general public, and he further asserts that today there is a lack of a shared transcending ideology that might provide identity and consolation. While secular funerals remain the norm, they fail to satisfy most of the bereaved thus resulting in the increasingly popular decision to hold no farewell ceremony at all.
Nešpor, Zdeněk R. 2021. „The Czech(oslovak) Model? Secular Last Rites in Central Europe under the Communists and Beyond.“ Mortality 26 (2): 144-156. ISSN 1357-6275.