Education in Croatia

Croatia – education

Croatian education in the 1990’s aims partly to overcome the harmful effects of the war, and partly to implement new laws and curricula to replace the previously strongly centralized Yugoslav school system. There is mother tongue education for the country’s many minorities, and it has become possible to set up private schools, although there are still quite a few.

Preschool for 1-6 year olds is free in the last year. There is eight years of compulsory schooling, which is fulfilled in primary school for 6-14-year-olds. This is followed by three different youth educations: colleges and art schools that are four years old, as well as vocational schools of 1-4 years duration. 40% were educated at this level in 1991. There are four universities, which are located in resp. Zagreb, Split, Rijeka and Osijek.


OFFICIAL NAME: Republic of Croatia


POPULATION: 4,220,000 (Source: COUNTRYaah)

AREA: 55,920 km²

OFFICIAL LANGUAGE (S): Croatian, Serbian, other

RELIGION: Catholics 86%, Orthodox 4.5%, Muslims 1.5%, Protestants 0.3%, others el. no 7.7%

COIN: kuna





Croats 90%, Serbs 4%, others 6%

GDP PER residents: $ 13,500 (2014)

LIFE EXPECTANCY: men 72.8 years, women 80.2 years (2014)




Croatia, republic of the Balkans. In the first half of the 1990’s, the country was severely affected by the Yugoslav wars. After a lengthy political process, the country was normalized in the years after the turn of the millennium. The country joined the EU in 2013.

  • Find two-letter abbreviation for each independent country and territory, such as HR which stands for Croatia.

Croatia – Constitution

Republic of Croatia is a parliamentary democracy. The constitution is from 1990 with later, comprehensive revisions. Legislative power lies with a parliament, Sabor, which has 153 members elected on party lists in direct elections. They are elected for four-year periods.

The executive power lies with the president, who is elected by direct universal suffrage for a term of five years. The President appoints the Prime Minister. It usually becomes the leader of the majority party or coalition, which then has to be approved by parliament. Check youremailverifier for Croatia social condition facts.

Croatia – economy

Since independence in 1991, the Croatian government has sought to privatize and restructure the socialist economy, but economic development was strongly influenced by the war against Serbia and the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Croatia financed its war expenses through the issuance of banknotes and coins, which led to a resurgence of the hyperinflation that had plagued Yugoslavia in the late 1980’s.

In 1993, the government, with the support of the International Monetary Fund, IMF, launched a stabilization program which, among other things, sought to curb inflation through tight economic policies and, through restructuring, create the basis for a market-based recovery.

A privatization fund was set up the same year with the aim of restructuring the former state-owned enterprises and streamlining the privatization program launched two years earlier. In 1994, another stabilization program was launched, this time with the aim of restructuring the banking sector and the loss-making companies.

The stabilization policy has been successful. The economy has thus been growing since 1994, from 2000 with annual growth rates around 4%. Public budgets came into balance, inflation stabilized at a low level, and considerable confidence was created in the currency, the kuna, which in May 1994 replaced the transitional currency, Croatian dinars. However, a persistent trade deficit and borrowing to build the infrastructure have led to an increase in the external debt to approximately 90% of GDP (2005).

Since 2000, the tourist visit has been progressing, but the privatization program and the IMF’s demands for public savings have maintained the high unemployment rate of approximately 17%. At the same time, a general government deficit has emerged (5% in 2005). Croatia became a member of the WTO in 2000 and in 2004 was approved as an EU candidate country; the accession negotiations began the following year.

In 2005, Germany and Italy were Croatia’s most important trading partners. Denmark’s exports to Croatia in 2005 amounted to DKK 781 million. DKK, while imports from there amounted to 131 mill. kr.

Croatia (Military)

The armed forces OSRH (Oružane snage Republike Hrvatske) were built and streamlined in preparation for the revenge wars in 1995. They are (2006) at 20,800, of which approximately one-third are conscripts with six months of service. The Army HKV (Hrvatska Kopnena Vojska) is at 14,050, the Navy HRM (Hrvatska Ratna Mornarica) at 2500 and the Air Force & Air Defense HRZ (Hrvatsko Ratno Zrakoplovstvo) at 2300. The reserve is 108,200. The defenses are predominantly equipped with equipment of Soviet and ex-Yugoslav origin. The security forces include approximately 10,000 in an armed police force.

Croatia joined NATO in 2009.

In August 1995, the Croatian armed forces participated in Operation Oluja, in cooperation with the Bosnian forces, to drive the Serbs out of areas they had occupied. The action was endorsed by US President Clinton and led to the Dayton Accords in November of that year, marking the end of the Yugoslav Civil War.

Croatia – mass media

The Croatian press experienced an unusual degree of freedom in the late 1980’s during the collapse of the communist system. Private media business was allowed in 1990, and a few years later the former all-dominant Vjesnik magazine house – the largest in the Balkans – was split up.

But the new government, which came into being after the first multi-party elections in 1990, gradually secured more or less direct control of all major news media, e.g. through opaque privatizations, and press freedom was curtailed.

In particular, the state Hrvatska radio-televizija, HRT, which had a monopoly on broadcasting nationwide radio and television, and the state news agency HINA were marked by the regime’s propaganda and nationalism.

The Večernji List is the largest daily newspaper (circulation 160,000 in 1995), but is surpassed by the sensational weekly newspaper Globus. The media supply is varied with more than 800 newspapers, weeklies and magazines (1995). Only a few independent and government-critical media claim, including Radio 101 in Zagreb, the newspaper Novi List in Rijeka and the satirical weekly Feral Tribune (50,000 in 1996).

South Slavic art – visual art and architecture

architecture and visual art in the western South Slavic countries, ie. Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro and Macedonia, which made up Yugoslavia from 1918-92 .

From the period before the immigration of the Slavic tribes to the area in the late 500’s and in the 600’s, many Roman buildings have been preserved, the amphitheater in Pula and Diocletian’s palace in Split; from ancient Christian times the basilica of Poreč on the peninsula of Istria with mosaics from the 5th century.

The architecture and art around the year 1000 were in the north characterized by the Central European Romanesque art, in the south by the Byzantine art; famous is the round church Sveti Donat from approximately 810 in Zadar in Dalmatia and Sveta Sofija Cathedral on Lake Ohrid in Macedonia with 1000’s frescoes.

From the 13th century, beautiful stonemasonry is known in Dalmatia by the sculptor Radovan in Trogir and Zadar and by the woodcarver Andrija Buvina in Split.

In Bosnia and Herzegovina, a peculiar production of stone stems with stone-carved ornaments emerged; almost 40,000 of these stećci have been preserved. Byzantine art flourished especially in monasteries and churches in Macedonia, Serbia and Kosovo in the 12th and 14th centuries, such as the frescoes in the Sveti Kliment church in Ohrid.

In Bosnia there are some wonderfully illuminated Bible manuscripts, while in Croatia and Slovenia there are small churches with late Gothic frescoes inspired by southern Germany and northern Italy.

In the 15th and 16th centuries, a large part of the South Slavic area was occupied by the Turks, and many mosques, bathing facilities and bridges were built, among others. the beautiful bridge in Mostar from 1566 (destroyed 1993).

However, Byzantine-style frescoes and icons were still performed, especially in Macedonia, but the most intriguing works are found in Dubrovnik, whose buildings and visual art show the close contact with medieval, Renaissance and Baroque Italy. The most famous architect was Juraj Dalmatinac (d. 1475), and the foremost painter Nikola Božidarević (d. 1517/18). In addition, a varied folk art has unfolded.

The 18th century in particular was rich in magnificent woodcarving work, for example in the many wooden iconostases in Macedonia and part of Serbia, and in the 18th and 18th centuries, icons were painted on glass in Vojvodina.

The 19th century was marked by the influence of contemporary Western painting, while in the 20th century, especially in the northern areas, a naive painting style developed, strongly influenced by folk life and folk art. In the field of sculpture, the Croatian Ivan Meštrović from Split has become internationally known.

Croatia – literature

The spread of Christianity in the Balkans led to the 1400’s. a Croatian translation literature in the form of saint biographies, apocrypha and mystery games along with secular literature such as an Alexander novel.

The first Croatian art poetry of importance originated in Dalmatia in the 1400’s. under the direct influence of the Italian Renaissance and with the city-republic of Dubrovnik as the cultural center.

The most important writers of this period were the humanist and poet Marko Marulić (1457-1527), the moralist Mavro Vetranović (1482-1576) and the comedy writer Marin Držić (1505-67).

With the two Dubrovnik poets Dinko Ranjina (1536-1607) and Dominko Zlatarić (1558-1609), the Renaissance resounded and gave way to a strict and moralizing Baroque literature, whose greatest name was Ivan Gundulić (1589-1638), who in his unfinished epic Osman depicted Christianity’s final victory over Islam.

After Dalmatia had been the cultural powerhouse throughout the Renaissance, began from the 1600’s. also the interior of Croatia to assert itself in literature, primarily through the Jesuit Juraj Habdelić (1609-78), who wrote religious books, and the nobleman Petar Zrinski (1621-71), who wrote about the Turkish siege of Szigetvár in Hungary. German Enlightenment ideas were conveyed by Matija Antun Relković (1737-98), and a historical chronicle of the Franciscan monk Andrija Kačić Miošić (1704-60) achieved great favor in his time.

With the romance, it came to a national awakening in Croatia. The three main dialects štokavisk, kajkavisk and čakavisk, had all served as literary languages, but in the 1830’s, Croatian intellectuals gathered around the štokavian dialect, which the Croats had in common with the Serbs.

By choosing this dialect as a language of literature, they would pave the way for a political and cultural unification of the South Slavic tribes in an “Illyria”. The Illyrian movement, inspired by pan-Slavism, had Ljudevit Gaj as its banner bearer and ideologue.

It was first and foremost a political-national movement, and the bulk of the literature was little more than national agitation. However, three poets from this period have remained: Stanko Vraz, Ivan Mažuranić and Petar Preradović (1818-72).

After the revolution of 1848 and a ten-year period of stagnation, national and political ideas flourished through the 1860’s and 1870’s with August Šenoa, and from approximately 1880 followed a realistic and socially critical literature with French and Russian role models. A central theme of the Croatian realists was the disappointments and defeats of the people who had broken away from the patriarchal village milieu to seek happiness in the cities.

The social indignation was most evident in Ante Kovačić (1854-89), Josip Kozarac (1858-1906), Vjenčeslav Novak (1859-1905) and Ksaver Šandor Đalski (1854-1935). The poet Silvije S. Kranjčević (1865-1908) stood with his mythical-visionary poems as a forerunner of the first Croatian modernism in the early 1900’s.

The aesthetic programs that characterized the turn of the century in the capitals of Western Europe also had an impact on the cultural atmosphere of Zagreb. In a bitter confrontation with the older generation of writers, the young poets demanded artistic freedom and rejected the earlier literature as provincial and dilettante.

The encounter with European culture was so overwhelming and diverse that Croatian modernism was variegated like an open peacock tail. The novel stepped into the background, and the lyrics, the symbolist drama and short prose forms dominated. At AG Matoš we find a finely chiseled language, the search for beauty and an almost exaggerated aestheticist who influenced many later Croatian poets.

Vladimir Vidrić’s (1875-1909) poems are set in an unreal mythological world, and Dragutin Domjanić (1875-1933) writes melancholy and life-weary about the past. With Vladimir Nazor (1876-1949), the national and the Yugoslav idea re-entered literature with an optimistic nature- and life-enthusiastic lyric inspired by ancient Slavic legends and legends; together with Ivo Vojnović, Nazor was one of the hottest advocates of a gathering of Croats and Serbs.

During and in the first years after the First World War, Expressionism intervened with Miroslav Krleža’s antimilitarist literature and the poetry of Antun Branko Šimić (1898-1925). Together with August Cesarec (1893-1941) and Ulderiko Donadini (1894-1923), they formulated the view of art of expressionism in several journals, but as a direction, expressionism in Croatian literature lasted a short time.

One of the most original figures of the interwar period was the lyricist Tin Ujević, whose contrasting lyricism oscillated between deep pessimism and devilish defiance and bore memories of French symbolism and surrealism.

During the 1930’s, literature was polarized in a socially engaged wing composed of left-wing writers, whose most prominent figure was M. Krleža, and a clerical-bourgeois wing, increasingly dominated by an increasingly overtly fascist Blut und Boden literature, and whose captain was the later Minister of Foreign Affairs of the State of Ustaša, Mile Budak (1889-1945).

After World War II, the conditions for literary activity had radically changed in what is now socialist Yugoslavia. The demand for socialist realism lasted only a few years, and at the Writers’ Congress in Ljubljana in 1952, Krleža demanded artistic freedom, and that literature in Yugoslavia liberate itself from both Eastern and Western role models.

In particular, the poetry characterized the Croatian literature of the fifties; Jure Kaštelan and Vesna Parun (1922-2010) broke with the schematic “engaged” poetry and wrote real poetry about nature and about love, and a circle of young poets around the magazine Krugovi (Circles), Slavko Mihalić, Ivan Slamnig (1930-2001) oa, experimented with form and a highly subjective lyric.

On the prose side, Petar Šegedin portrayed man’s fear of existence, while Ranko Marinković described anti-heroes and gloomy phobias. Throughout the 1960’s and 1970’s, a group of poets around the magazine Razlog (Grund) went in the existentialist direction, influenced by Martin Heidegger and Jean-Paul Sartre, while another group around the magazine Bit (Væsen) represented the concrete poetry.

Under the influence of JD Salinger, the so-called blue jeans prose about young, maladapted people in relation to the surrounding established society emerged in the 1970’s.

The independence in 1991 has literally brought a lot of turbulence. National engagement has once again become a strong imperative, and while rehabilitating a number of writers convicted of war crimes in 1945, more critical writers such as Dubravka Ugrešić and Slavenka Drakulić are examining Croatian national myths and Catholicism in essay writing and fiction.

Croatia – dance

Until World War II, Croatia had a living tradition of local and regional dances. Eastern Croatia was characterized by drmeš- type dances, performed in a closed circle and with small steps in vertical motion. In the central part, horizontal movements with high jumps characterized the local chain and circle dances.

Along the Adriatic Sea, since the Renaissance, there has been a significant Venetian influence on the dance repertoire, which has consisted of double dance, where men and women dance in two rows opposite each other, and of couple dancing with a front dancer.

The country’s ethnic minorities have had their own dance traditions. In communist Yugoslavia, Croatian dances were choreographed for show use in the repertoire of many dance ensembles. ‘

Following the independence of Croatia, traditional dance and music have gained renewed popularity as a national symbol.

Croatia – music

Croatian music history dates back to the 1000’s. Almost nothing is known about secular music, but there is some information about church music, which is represented by two directions. One is connected to the Roman Church and the Gregorian chant, whose history in Croatia is illuminated by a large number of documents from the 1000’s and later. The second, the Glagolitic song, which spread in the coastal country of Dalmatia with the Church Slavonic liturgy, presents no documents with melodies, but the tradition lives on, for example on the island of Krk.

Art music

Catholic church singing developed in accordance with church music in the rest of Europe. Until the 19th century, cultural life unfolded especially in the coastal towns. In Split, the church song was performed by Ivan Lukačić (approximately 1584-1648), who wrote a series of clerical concerts in Italian style. In Dubrovnik, Luka Sorkočević (1734-89) wrote the first Croatian symphonies, Julije Bajamonti (1744-1800) composed masses and motets, and the violin virtuoso Ivan Mane Jarnović (approximately 1740-1804) performed extensively in major European cities.

In the 19th century, the cultural center moved from Dalmatia to Zagreb. With the national revival of illyrism arose the desire to create an original Croatian music based on folk music.

Franjo Kuhač (1834-1911) was the first professional musicologist to publish a collection of 2000 melodies. Vatroslav Lisinski (1819-54), who composed music in this spirit, founded the Croatian opera.

From the middle of the 19th century, the national direction stagnated and Illyrian activity weakened. With the formation of Austria-Hungary in 1867, central Croatia came under strong Hungarian influence. Singing and stage music were still the preferred forms, but the music was now more based on Italian style. During this period, the whole musical life was strongly influenced by the composer Ivan Zajc (1832-1914).

After 1918, the national orientation was revived, and many young Croatian composers sought inspiration in folk music. Ivan Matetić Ronjgov (1880-1960) turned his attention to Istria’s unique folk music and paved the way for other Croatian composers.

Numerous choral works were written and performed by Croatia’s many choral associations. Also on stage, the popular elements were expressed. Lasting success was the ballet’s main representatives Krešimir Baranović (1894-1975) with The Gingerbread Heart (1924) and Fran Lhotka (1883-1962) with The Devil in the Village (1934), as well as Jakov Gotovac (1895-1982) with his comic opera Ero from the Other World (1935). Josip Slavenski (1896-1955), a student of Zoltán Kodály, extended his interest to the whole of the Balkans and the Orient, composing in a new, personal tone language a number of works in this spirit.

In the socialist Yugoslavia after World War II, a number of composers maintained contact with folk music, while their tonal language sought new, more internationally oriented forms of expression. The most modern forms of compositional techniques were used by the Croatian avant-garde, such as Branimir Sakač (1918-79) and Milko Kelemen.

In the new Croatia, the musical tradition is continued with renowned ensembles such as the Zagreb Philharmonic and the Zagreb Soloists and with the Zagreb Biennale for Contemporary Music, founded in 1961.

Folk music

Croatia’s folk culture testifies to the influence of many places. The migrations caused by the Turkish wars led to mutual influences between the ethnic groups. In addition, the influence comes from Italy, Austria and Hungary.

The pure vocal music includes lyrical and ritual songs that are often sung in connection with chain dancing. Polyphony, especially two-part, characterizes almost all singing and exhibits many interesting forms.

One of the oldest forms is still found in the mountainous region above the coast of Dalmatia, where the shepherds adorn their lyrical songs with a powerful vocal shake over a lying tone. In Istria and on the islands of the northern Adriatic, the duet is sung in parallel thirds or sextets on a special “Istrian” scale, a system that differs very sharply from the system of twelve identical semitone steps. Newer forms of two-part are characterized by Western European accordion.

The most common is the so-called na bass, where the voices mostly move in third parallels and end on an empty fifth. In the cities of the coastal country and on the islands, one can hear both older and newer Dalmatian polyphonic city songs performed by small groups of men. Unanimity is found, for example, in Međimurje, where the melodies, as in Hungary, are church tones or pentatones.

Musical instruments rarely perform alone. The singer accompanies his epic with a snapped string instrument, tambura, or with the string instrument gusle. For dance is played on bagpipes, mješnice, gajde or dude, in Istria and on Krk dance couple dances to the cheerful music of the oboskalmejerne sopile, in Dubrovnik’s surroundings for the string instrument lijerica.

The beautifully carved double clarinet shell diple and the double flute dvojnice are mostly used for shepherd improvisations. The accordion has in recent times had a great impact on the tonal conditions of the old folk music. In ensemble, string ensembles with two violins and a bass are heard, and especially tambourine orchestras with instruments of various sizes.

In addition to traditional folk music, there is a wide-ranging network of amateur organizations that cultivate folk music and dance in an arranged form for the purpose of stage performances, as well as a few professional ensembles such as LADO in Zagreb. Folk music research is primarily handled by the Department of Ethnology and Folklore in Zagreb.

Croatia (Wine)

Wine is produced in two very different but almost equal zones, each having approximately 35,000 ha with vines. In the interior south of the Danube tributary Drava, especially fresh and full-bodied white wines are made. Here the main grapes are Welsh Riesling under the local name Graševina as well as Traminer, Sauvignon, Pinot Blanc and Riesling. On the coast and on the islands, the wines have power and fullness and bear the mark of the place of cultivation. The red Dingač and Postup are made on the grape plavacand can easily have an alcohol percentage of 15 with the potential for many years of storage. At Split, the same grape produces the thick and sweet Prošek, reminiscent of plum or fig syrup. Other good red wines are made from the grape babić, while pošip, grk and vugava give powerful white wines. In Istria, wines in a more international style are made from French and Italian grapes.

Croatia Education