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Target Julek

  • Where: Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00
  • When: February 20, 2018, 19:00 – 21:00

Presentation of an exceptional graphic novel tribute to Julek Varga – a seriously ill dissident who was a thorn in the side of the StB.

Julius Varga got extremely sick at the age of nine after being inoculated against jaundice and became bedbound. Despite this he set out to take on not just his serious illness (the regime forbade his family from travelling to Switzerland for treatment) but also the totalitarian system. He converted to Christianity and began studying theology and philosophy. The Varga apartment in Šumperk became a gathering place for dissidents, former political prisoners and intellectuals, and among those who visited the charismatic Julek were Dominik Duka, Josef Zvěřina, Oto Mádr and Václav Malý. Soon the State Security began to monitor Julius Varga, setting up the “Julek” file on him in the spring of 1989. Shortly after the revolution in 1989 Julek got to see foreign doctors for the first time. However, by then his illness was too far advanced. He died at the age of 33.

Director Ondřej Elbel began working on a graphic novel about Julek four years ago. Designer Martin Jabůrek was doing the illustrations but died suddenly in February 2015. His friends Butula-Cichá, Chalánková, Estrada, Karpíšek and Matyska completed the work.

Organised by the Václav Havel Library in cooperation with the Větrné mlýny publishing house.


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A Word about Words – samizdat essay

„Besides, to be wary of words and of the horrors that might slumber inconspicuously within them – isn’t this, after all, the true vocation of the intellectual? I recall that André Glucksmann once spoke in Prague about the need for intellectuals to emulate Cassandra: to listen carefully to the words of the powerful, to be watchful of them, to forewarn them of their danger, and to proclaim their dire implications or the evil they might invoke.“

Václav Havel:
A Word about Words – samizdat essay, July 25, 1989

What Price Human Rights?