The Czech and Slovak Cultural Center has a fantastic first quarter planned. These lectures are free and open to the public. The CSCC would love any donations to continue to bring interesting programs to our audience.
Below is a list of the upcoming lectures and information about the engagement itself. A couple of weeks prior to an event, a reminder post will be made.
Please consider joining us for the following:
Saturday, January 11th - Tomas Klvana - ‘UPDATE ON THE POLITICAL SITUATION IN CZECH REPUBLIC - at 10AM - at City Bella, 6600 Lyndale Ave South, Richfield, MN – Room TBD
About the Speaker: Communism is dead, but not buried yet, and its corpse reeks. Come and hear about the recent status on the Czech republic presented by SKYPE from Prague, with lot of time for discussion. Dr. Klvana is already well known to our audiences to which he delivered several lectures during his last visit when he was honored by the University of Minnesota with a “distinguished leader” award. Educated at the Charles University in Prague (MA) and the University of Minnesota (PhD), he held several important posts in both public and private life in the Czech Republic and other West European countries. His most recent activities included active support for one of the Presidential candidates, Karel Schwarzenberg, the present Minister of Foreign Affairs. His main focus is on the development of the civil society and support for non-profit organizations that provide the backbone for such society. He visited Cuba several times to help promote the same ideas there, a courageous venture.
Sunday, January 26th – Dr Tomas Sedlacek from the Czech Republic via Skype on his book ‘Economics of Good and Evil’ at 3pm in the CSPS Hall
About the speaker: Tomas Sedlacek has shaken the study of economics as few ever have. Named one of the “five hot minds in economics” by the Yale Economic Review, he serves on the National Economic Council in Prague, where his provocative writing has achieved bestseller status. How has he done it? By arguing a simple, almost heretical proposition: Economics is ultimately about good and evil. His book has been translated into 14 languages. http://tomassedlacek.cz/
Sunday, February 9th – Daren Carlson – Topic: ‘Slovakia/Czech Republic and the Environment’ at 2 pm in the CSPS Hall
About the speaker: Daren Carlson is a scientist at the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. He has spent time studying environmental issues in Slovakia. He and his wife Barbara are members at Sokol.
Sunday, March 30th – Martin Roberts from Spain via Skype – ‘Austerity Measures and Europe’ (co-sponsored with the Spanish organizations) at 2 pm in the CSPS Hall
Madrid-based correspondent Martin Roberts will talk about draconian spending measures imposed on the euro zone’s “peripheral” economies by drawing on his reporting from Spain and Portugal for UK newspapers and Reuters news agency since the crisis erupted in early 2010. The big debate for countries eligible to apply for membership of the common currency, like the Czech Republic and Slovakia, is whether they would face the same stagnation and unrest as Spain, or stability like Germany.
Spain is a significant piece of the puzzle because the country was on the verge of needing a bailout in July 2012, one which lenders may not have been able to afford and could have seriously undermined the euro’s sustainability. The crisis has meanwhile battered neighboring Portugal.
The lecture will also spell out what the euro is, as well as how and why it came about in order to demonstrate just how perspectives have changed since it was first launched in 1999. Back in the day, the euro gave Spain a strong currency and low interest rates for the first time ever and while the good times rolled nobody seemed to notice how inflated the local property bubble was. Then came the Lehman Bros. collapse and Greece admitting it had cooked its books, and governments around Europe suddenly had severe financial problems.
The euro zone has pulled back from the brink – at least for now — but Spain is mired in its longest economic slump for decades and saddled with 26% unemployment, not to mention the impact of draconian austerity programs. Mass protests are common and confidence in the political process is rock bottom, while the crisis has also stoked separatist sentiment in Catalonia. The jury is still out on whether austerity is harsh but necessary medicine for a country that lived beyond its means, or whether they are counter-productive.
About the speaker: How many people do you know who have quizzed both Fidel Castro and George W. Bush at news conferences? Martin Roberts has reported from at least seven countries and in three languages on matters ranging from an interview with the Dalai Lama to covering the 2002 football World Cup in Korea. He has also earned critical acclaim from the New York Times and Publishers Weekly for books translated from Spanish into English, and have just translated the forthcoming novel by best-selling Spanish author Juan Gómez-Jurado. Martin focuses a great deal of his current articles on the political situation in Spain, and is frequently published in Independent, Times, Guardian, Daily Telegraph, Sunday Telegraph, the Observer, Sunday Times, New Statesman, ITV and the BBC. Martin is a regular studio guest on Spanish TV station Cuatro, and has occasional appearances on La Sexta and radio station COPE.
Saturday, January 25, 2014 10:00 a.m.-noon, 1st floor, CSPS Hall The Murder of Lidice by Edna St. Vincent Millay – Poem Reading
Saturday, February 22, 2014 10:00 a.m.-noon, 1st floor, CSPS Hall Daylight in the Nightclub Inferno: Czech Fiction from the Post-Kundera Generation edited by Elena Lappin – Book Discussion
Saturday, March 22, 2014 10:00 a.m.-noon, 1st floor, CSPS Hall Reflections of Prague: Journeys through the 20th Century by Ivan Margolius – Book Discussion