Tag Archives: Vaclav Havel
Fantastic Four

Czech literature beyond the Fantastic Four

If you’re at the London Book Fair today you can attend a discussion this evening on the broader and still broadening scope of contemporary Czech writing with translators Julia Sherwood, Alex Zucker and hosted by editorial director of Words without Borders Susan Harris. Sherwood is the translator of B O D Y’s most recent Saturday […]

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Literary roundup: Gottfried Benn, Bulgarian fiction and Havel

In The New Republic, Adam Thirlwell reviews Michael Hoffmann’s translation of a collection of Gottfried Benn’s poetry entitled Impromptus: Selected Poems and looks at the obscurity that Benn has fallen into due to his Nazi past. It’s a fascinating article, both for grappling with the moral issues that the reputations of these “disgraced” writers bring […]

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Central European writers in New York

From Nov. 14 through Nov. 16 the 10th annual New Literature from Europe festival will take place in New York featuring a number of authors from Central (but not only) Europe. Top of the list is Czech writer of the recently published The Devil’s Workshop, Jáchym Topol (top of the list, in this case, means […]

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Amoz Oz wins Franz Kafka Prize

The Prague-based Franz Kafka Society has awarded this year’s Franz Kafka Prize to Israeli writer Amos Oz. Oz is coming to the award ceremony that will take place in October and I hope, like 2011 winner John Banville did, will come to Kafka Society HQ to speak more informally, read from his work and take […]

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Forum 2000: Media and Democracy

In its 16th year in Prague Forum 2000 begins its first full day today after kicking off with an opening ceremony last night that included Joan Baez singing “We Shall Overcome” and will now follow up with discussion panels on the state of the media that may well disagree with Ms. Baez’s sentiments. We shall […]

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Literalab at the Frankfurt Book Fair

The 2012 Frankfurt Book Fair kicks off on Wednesday and as the world’s largest book fair will have quite a bit of interest in the way of books, writers and publishing talk and news. Just in terms of Central and Eastern European writers there will be writers such as Russian poet and essayist Olga Martynova, […]

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Literary roundup: The end of the Russian aristocracy, Václav Havel and I. B. Singer

At Farrar, Straus & Giroux’s Work in Progress historian Douglas Smith has a fascinating account of the origin, process and ultimate ambiguities he came up against in writing Former People: The Final Days of the Russian Aristocracy. Beginning with a Connecticut dinner with a descendant of the Sheremetev family and on through accounts of meetings […]

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Literary roundup: Misunderstanding Kafka and a Czech émigré novel

Apparently it isn’t only filmmakers who misunderstand Kafka. In the Times Literary Supplement Gabriel Josipovici writes an article covering a number of quite varied books about or related to Kafka titled “Why we don’t understand Kafka” that brings a demanding yet even-handed take on the ultimate resistance to interpretation that Kafka’s writing contains. In a […]

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Literary roundup: Croatian writers online, Polish writers on stage

Just discovered an excellent site devoted to Croatian writers – Critical Mass (Kritična masa) – is available in Croatian, English and German versions, and features both well-known and (for me at least) much lesser-known writers. There are author pages for Daša Drndić, whose novel Trieste was recently published in English and which I’ll have a […]

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Enter the Czech Literature Portal

While everyone seems vitally concerned with the portal Loki utilizes to make a surprise appearance on earth in The Avengers there is another portal I’d like to turn your attention to. If you haven’t gone to the Czech Literature Portal site yet now is your chance. From the beginning of May I have taken on […]

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