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Prague

Lavička VH Praha

  • installation date: May 1, 2014
  • address: Maltézské sq, Prague, Czech republic
  • foto: © Knihovna Václava Havla

The first Havel’s Place in the Czech Republic was unveiled on the Prague square Maltézské náměstí on 1 May 2014, the 10th anniversary of the Czech Republic’s accession to the EU. The guests of honour at the unveiling ceremony, which took place in a friendly and informal atmosphere, included Dagmar Havlová, the director of the Václav Havel Library, Marta Smolíková, mayor Tomáš Hudeček and Karel Schwarzenberg.

Havel’s Place is a memorial dedicated to Václav Havel. It comprises two chairs linked by a round table with a tree growing through its centre. The installation of Havel’s Places is a worldwide project initiated by the Czech ambassador to the US, Petr Gandalovič, and the architect and designer Bořek Šípek. The aim of the project, which is coordinated and implemented by the Václav Havel Library, is to create a network of places in public spaces that can contribute to meeting and the holding of genuine dialogue – places where it will be possible to hold discussions and reflect in the spirit of the ideals and philosophy of Václav Havel.

Speech on receiving the Indira Gandhi Prize, New Delhi

„Many Europeans and Americans today are painfully aware of the fact that Euro-American civilization has undermined and destroyed the autonomy of non-European cultures. They feel it was their fault, and thus feel they have to make amends through a kind of emotional identification with others, through accommodating them, through trying to ingratiate themselves, through a longing to “help” them in one way or another. To my mind, this is a false way of going about it… It contains… the same familiar feeling of superiority… It is inverted colonialism. It is an intellectual spasm. I think we will all help one another best if we make no pretences, remain ourselves, and simply respect and honour one another, just as we are. “

Václav Havel:
Speech on receiving the Indira Gandhi Prize, New Delhi, February 8, 1994

Ivan Krastev: Europe's FutureVáclav Havel’s Prague