Events: October 2018 RSS

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Karel Pecka – The Gulag Constellation 
October 1, 2018, 17:00

Presentation of the book Souhvězdí Gulag(The Gulag Constellation), a selection of work by the late writer, political prisoner and dissident Karel Pecka. The evening will also be a get-together of his friends, readers, admirers, fellow prisoners and colleagues held in connection with the 90thanniversary of his birth. There will be recollections of Karel Pecka, songs, poems and readings of excerpts from his books. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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The Autumn Symphony of the Plastic People 
October 1, 2018, 19:30

The book Podzemní symfonie Plastic People(The Autumn Symphony of the Plastic People)maps the story of the rock band The Plastic People of the Universe against the backdrop of the political developments of the 1970s and 1980s. It begins with an outline of the group’s history in the years 1968–1976 within the framework of the advent of psychedelic rock in Czechoslovakia and the first stirrings of the concept of cultural opposition. It also analyses the context of the politically focused dissent, primarily Charter 77, and the band’s long-term ties to Václav Havel. This is followed by a look at the formation of Půlnoci and Domácí kapela, trips to the US, efforts to become legal… until the breakup of the group. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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OLGA 
October 2, 2018, 10:00

The documentary film Olga (2014, 84 min., Czech with English titles) by the well-known Czech director Miroslav Janek is a portrait of Olga Havlová, one of the most noteworthy Czech women of the 20thcentury. The police couldn’t break her and the Castle didn’t change her. Though she came from a working class background, she became an essential element of the Czech cultural and intellectual world in the 1950s and 1960s, offering critical assessments of her husband’s work and supporting him in the toughest periods following the creation of Charter 77. The film documents Olga’s world and time as well as her highly original outlook. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Footprints in the Snow 
October 4, 2018, 10:00

Banned literature was smuggled into Communist Czechoslovakia in various ways. One of the toughest physically was carrying dozens of kilogrammes of books from Poland over passes in the Tatra Mountains. It was chiefly religious literature that, with the help of strong young volunteers, reached Slovakia in that way. What happened when a smuggler was caught and arrested? And what was the reaction of Polish border guards, in whose country the circulation of religious literature was most commonplace? More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Pavao Pavličić: Dixieland 
October 4, 2018, 19:00

Pavao Pavličić is one of the most highly regarded contemporary Croatian writers. His Dixieland– which follows the fates of eight members of an occasional band in Vukovar until a tragic finale in 1991 – is the most noteworthy Croatian novel of the 1990s. In terms of its importance it bears comparison to such works as Günter Grass’s The Tin Drumand The Lost Stepsby Alej Carpentier. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Mihail Sebastian: How I Became a Hooligan 
October 5, 2018, 18:00

The scandal sparked by the publication in 1934 of the novel Two Thousand Years/How I Became a Hooliganby the then 27-year-old writer Mihail Sebastian exceeded the bounds of literature and fuelled the anti-Semitic passions of that era. The novel maps in quasi-diary form the events, social climate and atmosphere of Romania’s bohemia between 1922 and 1933. It also attempts to describe and delineate the status of Jews, the position of the individual against the masses and the intellectual against the world and explores the metaphysical subject of solitude. At the same time, this once scandalous and revolutionary book, long a classic, remains strikingly current to this day. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Ayelet Gundar-Goshen: Waking Lions 
October 8, 2018, 19:00

How the State of Israel deals with migration. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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The Festival of Democracy and the VHL present debates: 
October 9, 2018, 10:00

The Festival of Democracy takes place as an accompanying programme to the Forum 2000 conference. At the Václav Havel Library it is presenting discussions on the value of intergenerational relationships in contemporary society, a round table with journalists and a debate on whether it isn’t time for the first female Czech president. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Václav Havel Human Rights Prize 2018 
October 10, 2018, 12:30 Conferences

The sixth edition of the international conference in honour of the winner of the Václav Havel Human Rights Prize, which is bestowed by the Václav Havel Library, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and the Charter 77 Foundation. More

Prague Crossroads, St. Anna´s Church, Prague  |  ico  | 
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Gala Concert: A Tribute to the Brave 
October 10, 2018, 19:30

This concert held on the occasion of the presentation of the Václav Havel Prize is also an expression of respect to those who have faced or are today forced to face injustices of any kind. The works of Bohuslav Martinů, Pavel Haas, Gideon Klein and other composers persecuted by the Nazi or communist regimes will be performed by leading musicians. During part of the concert the stage and audience in Prague will be connected to Bratislava via high-speed internet. More

Prague Crossroads, St. Anna´s Church, Prague  |  ico  | 
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The Festival of Democracy and the VHL present debates: 
October 10, 2018, 11:00

The Festival of Democracy takes place as an accompanying programme to the Forum 2000 conference. At the Václav Havel Library it presents discussions on what freedom and democracy mean for young people and the position of the media in Central Europe. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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The Truth as the Supreme Authority of Conscience 
October 11, 2018, 19:00

Resistance in the work of Milada Horáková More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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The Sandwich Generation: Finding a Balance Between Work and Family Life 
October 12, 2018, 19:00

Up to a quarter of Czechs belong to the so-called sandwich generation, defined as caring simultaneously for both minors and older parents. The vast majority of those concerned are woman who also have fulltime jobs. The sandwich generation face a great number of challenges and problems, as taking care of two generations is demanding in emotional, time and financial terms. With couples delaying parenthood and people living longer, it is a subject that needs to be addressed in discussions of family policy, modernisation of the labour market and healthcare. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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After the Great War: European remembrance 1918–1923 
October 15, 2018, 19:00

The creation of New Europe in 1918–1923 was a complicated and not always peaceful process. The instability and erosion of the newly built order contributed to the outbreak of the Second World War. One hundred years after the end of the Great War, European Network Remembrance and Solidarity in cooperation with historians from over a dozen countries have prepared an outdoor exhibition, which starts its European tour in Prague on 15 October. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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From Long Hairs to the Underground: Czechoslovakia 1970–1975 
October 16, 2018, 10:00

The fourth edition of this international conference maps a crucial period in the Czech underground. At the end of 1969 virtually nobody would have believed that just five years later there would be a sizable underground throughout the Czech regions, what’s more with its own “programme”. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Debate with Respekt 
October 16, 2018, 19:00

Discussion with Respekt editors and their guests on a topical issue. More information will be posted at least one week before the event at www.vaclavhavel-library.org

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 

Upcomming events

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The Case of Josef Mengele 
October 18, 2018, 19:00

1949: Josef Mengele arrives in Argentina. Disguised and under various pseudonyms, Auschwitz’s “Angel of Death” attempts to start a new life in Buenos Aires. Peron’s Argentina is hospitable to former Nazis and it seems that the whole world wishes to forget the crimes of WWII. However, the hunt for war criminals is gaining momentum and Mengele is forced to flee to Paraguay and later Brazil. He changes his identity, hiding places and locations and, consumed by disgrace, finds no rest until his mysterious death on a beach in 1979. How is it possible that this top Nazi managed to evade capture for 30 years? How come Nazi-hunting agents didn’t succeed in capturing Mengele? Which secret services helped him? More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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King Škrábal, or Ivan Krasopicec 
October 18, 2018, 19:00

In March 1945 Hugo Vavrečka wrote his for grandson Ivan M. Havel PohádkaO králi Škrábalovi čili Ivanovi krasopisci(A Fairy Tale About KingŠkrábal, or Ivan Krasopicec). Soon afterwards the text disappeared in the swirl of post-war events and only now has it reached its intended reader, over 70 years later, in connection with celebrations of Ivan M. Havel’s 80thbirthday. More

Lucerna Palace rooftop, Štěpánská 61, Prague 1  |  ico  | 
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From Hopeful to Hopeless or from Hopeless to Hopeful. Democratic Transition in the Caucasus 
October 22, 2018, 19:00

Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia are three countries bound together by geography but with very little else in common. Armenia’s velvet revolution in April has catapulted the country from kleptocracy onto the road to democracy. All eyes are on the charismatic new Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and his new government as they translate revolutionary expectation into realistic policy. Armenia can do worse than look to its northern neighbour, Georgia to understand the difficulties ahead. Fifteen years have passed since its Rose revolution and despite making strides in accountably, transparency and democracy the momentum has stalled. As Georgians go to the polls in October to elect a new president the country’s future is far from certain. Meanwhile there seems to be little hope for change in authoritarian Azerbaijan whose repressive government is showing little sign of loosening its grip. Yet as Armenia has shown, change can happen at the most unexpected moments. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Poets of Moravia 
October 23, 2018, 19:00

An evening of readings specially put together for the VHL by Olomouc prose author, visual artist and drama therapist Milan Valenta and his friends – poets from greater and lesser Haná – Ruda B. Beran, Miroslav Demel and Michal Růžička. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Miřenka Čechová: Miss AmeriKa 
October 24, 2018, 19:00

The book Miss AmeriKa is a fictitious document centred on the Eastern European illegal alien McKenzie Tomski that sarcastically depicts her experiences of New York, its inhabitants and trends and her own journey. Miřenka Čechová wrote the raw short stories during an artistic residence she spent in the Big Apple. Inspired by the city, fascinated by its people and their stories and overwhelmed by opportunities and absurdities, she delivers an uncompromisingly candid report about the state of the world through the eyes of McKenzie Tomski. Čechová’s blonde wig wearing alter ego isn’t afraid to demolish US clichés or hyper-correctness but at the same time follows her American dream of “making it someday”. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Ladislav Hejdánek: The Czechs and Europe 
October 25, 2018, 19:00

The philosopher and Charter 77 spokesman Ladislav Hejdánek will address pressing topical subjects in his new book. These include disturbing “mob minds” succumbing to pseudo scientists, the threats posed by nationalism and the role of the nation. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 
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Recollections of Lou Reed – Fernando Saunders Concert 
October 26, 2018, 19:00

Appearance by US singer, composer producer and virtuoso bass guitar player Fernando Saunders. For over 30 years he stood side by side with Lou Reed, founder of the famous band The Velvet Underground, who died five years ago this year. Saunders was also with Reed during a concert at the White House requested by Václav Havel. More

Kampus Hybernská, Hybernská 4, Praha — Nové město  |  ico  | 
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Evening with Polish Reporters: An Afghan Prayer for Rain 
October 30, 2018, 19:00

A state whose territory was part of ancient empires as early as 800 B.C. is today associated with one thing: the Taliban. Polish reporterWojciech Jagielski and young journalist Fatima Rahimi, whose family were forced to flee Afghanistan’s Herat and who currently lives in the Czech Republic, will discuss a country where complicated armed conflicts have been going on for decades. More

Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00  |  ico  | 

The Czech Fate – essay

„I don’t believe in that Fate at all and I think that in the first instance we are engineers of our own fate… After all, what happened did not happen because we are Czechs and Czechs always have to suffer at the hands of their neighbours (because that is their “Czech Fate”), but for quite different , more specific reasons.“

Václav Havel:
The Czech Fate – essay, February 1969

The unbearable lightness of evilVáclav Havel’s Prague