Founders

Dagmar Havlová

She is a popular and award-winning Czech theatre, film and television actress. After marrying President Václav Havel in 1997, she accompanied him on official engagements as first lady and was actively engaged in charity work. In 1997 she founded the Dagmar and Václav Havel Foundation VIZE 97, of which she is chairwoman of the Board of Trustees. She is a member of Femmes d’Europe and is honorary chairwoman of the Czech Committee for UNICEF. She is an active member of several other Czech and international charity organisations. Alongside her charity work she has recently returned to acting. More information: http://www.havlova-veskrnova.com/

Karel Schwarzenberg

As chairman of the International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights he advocated for adherence to human rights in Europe in the 1980s. He returned to his homeland in the autumn of 1989 and on 10.7.1990 was appointed chancellor to President Václav Havel. In 1992 he led the first OSCE delegation to Nagorno Karabakh following the outbreak of war between Armenia and Azerbaijan. He stepped down as chancellor in the same year. In recent years he served as Czech minister of foreign affairs and is at present a member of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic. More information: http://www.karelschwarzenberg.cz/

Miloslav Petrusek

A respected professor of sociology, he worked at the Institute of Social Studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences at Charles University from the year 2000. He was visiting professor at Brno’s Masaryk University and external lecturer at the Department of Cultural Studies and Sociology at the Faculty of Arts of Charles University. From 2001 he was chairman of the Masaryk Czech Sociological Association. He also worked as an expert for the World Bank in the field of modernising sociology teaching in Russia. He died in 2012. More information: http://www.petrusek.cz/

Letter to Gustáv Husák – samizdat essay

„The overall question, then, is this: What profound intellectual and moral impotence will the nation suffer tomorrow, following the castration of its culture today? I fear that the baneful effects on society will outlast by many years the particular political interests that gave rise to them. So much more guilty, in the eyes of history, are those who have sacrificed the country’s spiritual future for the sake of their present power interests.“

Václav Havel:
Letter to Gustáv Husák – samizdat essay, April 8, 1975

What Price Human Rights?