The fashions clearly pointed to the late 1970s, but given that the setting was communist Czechoslovakia, it could have been as late as 1982. This was during a time when Czechoslovakia was one of the most hardline regimes in eastern Europe, so this book is not only a souvenir but also a work of propaganda.
Although my Czech is a little poor, the layout of the photographs created a fairly straightforward visual narrative and the book seemed to be heralding Mostecko as some sort of socialist utopia. Here are a few examples:
How nice to live somewhere where you can stand in the middle of the road without getting knocked down by a car
This man used to be Professor of Philosophy at Brno University, but following a slightly critical article he wrote about the 33rd Party Congress, he has been demoted to operating the sausage roll-making machine in Mostecko
Didn't the book's editors notice that the boy in the background is painting some sort of psychotic, Munchesque face?
'I am sorry comrade, but the Central Committee have decided that Dr Seuss is an imperialist lackey. Your daughter must only read books that are on the new list.'
Perhaps I am doing Mostecko a disservice, but the overall effect is of a socialist Purgatory. Why is nobody smiling? The pictures may have been intended as propaganda, but they tell a different story.
If I lived in the Mostecko of the 1980s, I think I'd have to develop a serious drinking problem to cope with the excitement of living there. I wonder what it's like today?
Mostecko does have an Old Town district, which if this picture is anything to go by, isn't quite the bustling metropolis it might once have been:
In fairness, there are some awful new towns in England and I'm told that the suburbs of Paris are an object lesson in how not to design a place for people to live. Why is it that planned towns are usually so vastly inferior to those that have evolved over time?