Ivan Dubovický will launch his bilingual book “Češi v Americe / Czechs in America” presenting extensive research on Czechs in the United States drawn from both Czech and U.S. archives. Not only educational, the book explores cultural and political dimensions, reminding readers of the role played by the U.S. in the history of Czech Republic and contributions by Czechs to U.S. history. The author takes great advantage of the richness of historical material such as documents and photos available in Czech and U.S. archives and museums. After the book presentation, Jiří Doležel will open the “Memory Traces” exhibition focused on Czech emigration in 1938, 1948 and 1968. The exhibition will present images of Czech patriots living on the U.S. East Coast who left their motherland to find freedom or safety. The “Memory Traces” project focuses on video interviews with these Czechs, who reveal a significant message – the importance of the U.S. democratic system, and its support for them as political refugees. They discuss how the American society and democracy helped them establishing their lives and professional careers. While these figures are not well known, they shine light on an important part of Czech national identity and make clear the significant links between the Czech Republic and the U.S. The Centennial of U.S.–Czech relations offers a unique opportunity to present and highlight the role of U.S. in the lives of this generation in a complex way while giving a significant message to youth on the importance of maintaining a liberal democracy.
This program will be in Czech.