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Milada Blekastad – Letters in a Time of Repression

Illustration
  • Where: Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00
  • When: January 17, 2018, 19:00 – 21:00

The correspondence of Milada Blekastad (nee Topičová) with Jan Patočka, Ludvík Vaculík and Julie Nováková.

Milada Blekastad left behind thousands of pages of correspondence with close friends and eminent names in Czech and Norwegian science and culture. Her letters and responses are a record not only of professional and personal relations but also of the age in which they were written.

The Václav Havel Library is holding this debate on the significance of correspondence in the period of Communist dictatorship in cooperation with the Institute of Philosophy at the Czech Academy of Sciences and the Elg association. Speakers: Věra Schifferová (Czech Academy of Sciences), Vladimír Urbánek (Czech Academy of Sciences) and Jan and Ondřej Vaculík.

The evening will also see the launch of the travelling exhibition Invisible Bridge: Milada Blekastad 1917–2003.

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Letters to Olga – essays written in prison, letter

„If I consider the problem as that which the world is turning me into – that is, as a tiny screw in a giant machine, deprived of human identity – then there is really nothing I can do. Obviously I cannot put a stop to the destruction of the globe, the growing stupidity of nations and the repoduction of thousands of new thermonuclear bombs. If, however, I consider it as that which each of us originally is, or rahter what each of us – irrespective of the state of the world – has the basic potential to become, which is to say an autonomous human being, capable of acting responsibly to and for the world, then of course there is a great deal I can do.“

Václav Havel:
Letters to Olga – essays written in prison, letter, March 6, 1982

What Price Human Rights?