Havel Conversations

Oral history focused on Vaclav’s Havel legacy in the United States and Canada before, during, and after his presidency aims to engage both public and scholarly interest in the dissident-to-president’s life and Havel’s unique leadership that interwove political and diplomatic life with music, arts, and dramatic and literary walks of life. Havel Conversations develop interviews that were prepared for Vaclav Havel Residency at Columbia University in 2006 by Columbia Center for New Media Teaching & Learning. Please see Havel Archives

Havel ConversationsVHLF & BBLA 2021 Annual Gala Honoring Sir Tom Stoppard: The Play’s the Thing October 17, 2021 Thursday, September 23, 2021 Vaclav Havel Library Foundation & Bohemian Benevolent and Literary Association Annual Gala Honoring Sir Tom Stoppard and presenting the sixth annual Disturbing the Peace Award to a Courageous Writer at Risk was held at the Bohemian National Hall in New York. With two-time Tony Award-winning actress …
Havel ConversationsHAVEL CONVERSATIONS ON ZOOM: Asli Erdogan in discussion with Elzbieta Matynia April 23, 2021 Disturbing the Peace Award recipient, Turkish writer Asli Erdogan will talk about her position of a dissident writer, a woman prisoner of conscience, Havel’s legacy, what hope meant for him and where we should look for it. She will be in discussion with Elzbieta Matynia, Professor of Sociology and Liberal …
Havel ConversationsHAVEL CONVERSATIONS ON ZOOM: Peter Sis in Discussion with Bill Shipsey February 3, 2021 The third of our 2021 Havel Conversations series will feature Czech-American artist, MacArthur Fellow, and three-time Caldecott Honoree Peter Sis. He will talk with VHLF board member, lawyer and human rights activist Bill Shipsey, the founder of Art for Amnesty – Amnesty International’s global artist engagement program. Sunday, March 7, …
Havel ConversationsHAVEL CONVERSATIONS ON ZOOM: Jiri Pehe in Discussion with Dr. Marilyn Wyatt January 27, 2021 The second of our 2021 Havel Conversations series will feature Czech journalist and political writer Jiri Pehe. Former chief political advisor to President Havel and now the director of New York University’s center in Prague, Pehe is a shrewd observer of both the American and European political scenes. He will …
Havel ConversationsHAVEL CONVERSATIONS ON ZOOM: Colum McCann in Discussion with Veronika Tuckerova December 30, 2020 The National Book Award–winning and bestselling author of Let the Great World Spin, Colum McCann, will introduce his latest epic novel Apeirogon and the global network Narrative 4 in discussion with Harvard lecturer in Slavic languages and literatures, Veronika Tuckerova Wednesday, January 27, 7 pm EST Watch HERE Colum McCann’s most …
Havel ConversationsU.S. Cultural Diplomacy & Czech Political Miracle December 18, 2020 American Embassy as a symbol of the free world in reflections of Vaclav Havel’s Czech friends and colleagues. In August 2020, the VHLF filmed several short interviews with Vaclav Havel’s colleagues, friends, and fellow dissidents. Michael Zantovsky describes the crucial role of the Vaclav Havel Library; Martin Palous talks about …
Havel ConversationsHavel Conversation with Jolyon Naegele December 18, 2020 Journalist, political analyst, Eastern and Southeastern European correspondent for the U.S. radio station Voice of America from 1980-2003, thinks back on his meetings with Vaclav Havel as well as other crucial moments of the late 1980s and early 1990s. The Voice of America broadcasting received accreditation through the U.S. Embassy …
Havel ConversationsVHLF & BBLA Annual Gala Celebrating Cultural Diplomacy November 6, 2020 Thursday, September 24, 2020 Vaclav Havel Library Foundation & Bohemian Benevolent and Literary Association Annual Gala Celebrating Cultural Diplomacy and Honoring Ambassador William Luers and Mrs. Wendy Luers and presenting the fifth annual Disturbing the Peace Award to a Courageous Writer at Risk took place online. Despite the fact that …
Havel Conversations, NewsTranslating Havel: The Tricky Parts May 31, 2020 Translating Havel: The Tricky Parts Moderated discussion, readings, Q&A Rehearsal for Truth, Theater Festival honoring Vaclav Havel 2020 Spring Weekend of Stage Readings Organized by Vaclav Havel Library Foundation and Bohemian Benevolent and Literary Association Renowned English translators of Vaclav Havel’s works – Paul Wilson, Jan Novak and Stepan Simek …
Havel ConversationsTestament of our Revolution What we can learn today from the Czechoslovak Experience of 1977 March 17, 2020 Source: Public Seminar / https://publicseminar.org / By Martin Palous / Martin Palous was one of the founding members of Charter 77, a broad civic movement that emerged in response to, among other things, the patent failure of the Czecholsovak Communist regime to live up to its international legal obligation to guarantee human …
Havel ConversationsEda Kriseová, Part 2: People hate Havel for his morality March 4, 2020 Source:Radio Prague International / www.radio.cz / By Ian Willoughby / Writer and former dissident Eda Kriseová worked closely with Václav Havel during his first few years as president. She headed Prague Castle’s Complaints and Pardons Department, then inundated with letters from Czechs who felt for the first time in decades …
Havel ConversationsHavel Conversations Live: Havel in America February 27, 2020 Moderated discussion by Pavla Niklova with William Luers, Wendy Luers, Lenka Kabrhelova and Rosamond Johnston in New York on October 7, 2019. Pavla Niklova, the Executive Director of the Vaclav Havel Library Foundation, discusses the oral history project with participants of the oral history collection Havel Conversations. Also discussed is …
Havel ConversationsHumility and “rock star” appeal – how Václav Havel won over the US November 2, 2019 Source: Radio Prague International / www.radio.cz / By Ian Willoughby / Václav Havel’s relationship to the United States is the focus of the recently issued book Havel v Americe (Havel in America) by historian Rosamund Johnston and journalist Lenka Kabrhelová. Mainly based on Q&A-style interviews, it contains insights and anecdotes …
Havel ConversationsREHEARSAL FOR TRUTH 2019: IN CONVERSATION: HAVEL IN AMERICA / moderated discussion August 9, 2019 Monday, October 7, 6:00 pm Duration: 120 min Pavla Niklova, Director of Vaclav Havel Library Foundation (VHLF), has invited participants from the oral history collection Havel Conversations and authors of the new book Havel v Americe (Havel in America)—featuring interviews from the project—to share their experiences. The event will also …
Havel Conversations, NewsVáclav Havel Library Foundation head Pavla Niklová: US students are still excited something like Havel’s story is possible January 13, 2019 Source: Radio Praha / www.radio.cz / By Ian Willoughby / The Václav Havel Library in Prague follows the US presidential library model in gathering and archiving materials relating to the late Czech dissident turned head of state. In the US, Havel’s legacy is promoted by sister organisation the Václav Havel …