Please join us for the fourth annual lecture series sponsored by the Czech and Slovak Cultural Center of Minnesota.
When: Saturday, May 18, 2013, 10:00 – 11:00 a.m. lecture via SKYPE, 11:00 – 12:00 a.m. discussion
It is not often that a small nation – or even a big power – gives to the world a person who touches people of the whole world and becomes a true legend. Václav Havel is one such person, and the country that gave him to the world, is the former Czechoslovakia, and now the Czech Republic. His achievements are many, ranging from opposition to communism to promotion of universal human rights.
There is no better person to speak about Havel’s legacy than Dr. Martin Palouš, Havel’s long time friend, his spokesperson and himself a global advocate of human rights. Palouš was among the first who signed the famous Charter 77 and helped create the Civic Forum after the demise of communism. After liberation he became member of the Czechoslovak Federal Parliament, and then moved to serve as the Deputy Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Subsequently he was called upon to became the Ambassador to the USA and then to the United Nations. Currently he is the Director of Václav Havel Presidential Library, inspired by the example American presidential libraries. Palouš is also a frequent lecturer and author, most recently Senior Fellow at the School of International and Public Affairs at the University of South Florida.
In his speech he will analyze the phases of Havel’s life (playwright, author, engaged citizen fighting for human rights in a communist dictatorship, leader of the “Velvet Revolution”, Czechoslovak and the Czech President, global statesman, and finally “past president”. Among other themes, Palouš will analyze critically Havel’s contribution to that it means Czech identity in the light if it being also a global identity.