A Czech Dreambook: Dissent as an Everyday Experience

When: Thursday 20 February 2020, 19:00 to 21:30
Where: Free Word, 60 Farringdon Road, London EC1R 3GA
Tickets: £4-6, via Free Word.

It’s 1979 in Communist Czechoslovakia and the banned writer Ludvík Vaculík – whose anti-regime manifesto was used by the Soviet Union as a pretext for invading Czechoslovakia – has writer’s block. He begins to keep a diary “about things, people and events”. The result is A Czech Dreambook, a unique mixture of diary, dream journal and outright fiction, in which the author, his family, his mistresses and leading characters of the Czech underground, such as Václav Havel – a regular contributor to Index on Censorship magazine – play major roles, bringing their dilemmas and decisions to life for contemporary readers.

Join the Czech Centre London and English PEN as Gerald Turner, Vaculík’s translator, Daňa Horáková, former dissident writer, and Jonathan Bolton, author of Worlds of Dissent, discuss Vaculík’s compelling portrait of dissident life, literary testimony in times of oppression and the role of women in dissent. Award-winning editor-in-chief of Index on Censorship magazine Rachael Jolley will be chairing the conversation.

Books will be available to purchase on the night. Tickets include a free drink.

Doors open at 6.00pm, the talk will be at 7 and books will be on sale after. 

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