A celebration of the 100th birthday anniversary
of the beloved, irreverent Czech author
Bohumil Hrabal

Readings (in Czech and English) and screenings, March 30, 5 PM at BNH

Moderated by Professor Christopher Harwood, Slavic Department at Columbia University

In cooperation with Czech Center NY

Free and open to the public. Contributions welcome.

The larger American public was introduced to Hrabal’s work through the Oscar winning film Closely Watched Trains directed by Jiri Menzel (1966). The humor, poetry and rich language in Bohumil Hrabal’s books was a challenge for translators into more than 27 languages. Eleven of his books are available in English.

This evening is for everyone who has fallen in love with Hrabal’s stories, his characters and his language, or at least been curious about them: from longtime aficionados of his books, to those who may only have seen one of the film adaptations, to those who have just heard about Hrabal and want to learn what the buzz is all about.

The public is invited to help shape the program by submitting the text of a favorite scene from one of Hrabal’s books or a description of a favorite scene from a film adaptation of one of his books.

Please send your short selection to Suzanna Halsey at by March 15. Indicate if you would be willing to read your selection during the event and in what language. For information contact Suzanna at 646 580 6612.

Organized by
Czechoslovak Society of Arts and Sciences
in cooperation with Czech Center New York

ANDY and THE RUSYNS, Saturday, June 8, 2013 at 5 PM

AndyA lecture by Elaine Rusinko
With James Warhola

Elaine Rusinko, Ph.D. , teaches Russian at University of Maryland, and is the author of a monograph We Are All Warhol’s Children: Andy and the Rusyns.

Her study establishes Warhol’s Carpatho-Rusyn ethnicity and explores its possible influence on his persona and his art. It also analyzes the Rusyns’ reception of Warhol, with a focus on the history of the Warhol Museum of Modern Art in Slovakia. She proposes that recognition of the Rusyn Andy contributes to a distinctive perspective on the American Warhol.

James Warhola, nephew, is an accomplished children’s book author. He also serves as a consultant to the Andy Warhol Museum of Modern Art in Slovakia, near the Warhola’s ancestral village of Miková.

Organized by the Czechoslovak Society of Arts and Sciences NY
In cooperation with the Carpatho-Rusyn Society, New York Chapter, and the Consulate General of the Slovak Republic in New York.

SEX TALK: Understanding Communism in Czechoslovakia through Expert Discourses of Sexuality

Wednesday, May 8 2013, TBD at 6:30PM

A lecture by Katerina Liskova,Visiting Scholar at Columbia University, Assistant Professor in gender and sociology at Masaryk University.
In Czechoslovakia, the chief expert discourse on sexuality was provided by the discipline of sexology – a medical branch focused on human sexuality. While other disciplines studying sexuality in its social context (i.e. sociology, psychology) were severely curtailed, sexology was allowed to flourish. How did political economy of a state socialist country influence sexual discourses?


re-SITE: Collaborative Ideas for Making (Czech) Cities More Livable

Thursday, FEBRUARY 7 AT 6:30 PM

at New York University
100 Washington Square East
(Waverly Place entrance)
3rd floor auditorium

A LECTURE by arch. MARTIN BARRY.reSITE founder
Introduction by Alexandros Washburn, Chief Urban Designer at NYC Planning
The lecture will include a report on the 2012 re-SITE Conference in Prague.

Presented by NYU Department of Art History & Urban Design and Architecture Studies
and Czech House NYU
in cooperation with the Czechoslovak Society of Arts & Sciences NY



Monika Zgustova: Goya’s Glass Mon, Nov 19 at 6:30pm

November 19, 2012 at 6:30 PM

Open/download the flyer

Reading and Talk Threee extraordinary women in three centuries: The Duchess of Alba, known as Goya’s muse, in times of Inquisition, the Czech writer Bozena Nemcova, member of the national Enlightenment movement in Austro-Hungary, and the Russian writer Nina Berberova who escapes persecution during the Russian Revolution.

Our Board member, Vit Horejsi (Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theater) will join Monika Zgustova at the book reading. It will be followed by a conversation with Katerina Liskova, PhD. Gender Studies Visiting Scholar at Columbia University.

Zgustova has published seven books, including novels, short stories, a play, and a biography. In 2004, she published biography of Bohumil Hrabal. Her translations from the Czech into both Spanish and Catalan, which include ten works by Bohumil Hrabal, Vaclav Havel, Jaroslav Hasek and Milan Kundera, have made her a key figure in the introduction of major Czech 20th century fiction into Spain. Zgustova received the Gratias Agit Prize from the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs.



Monday, May 7, 2012 at 7:00 PM

American Diplomats and Spies in Postwar Prague:
Was the 1948 Communist Takeover Inevitable?

A lecture by Professor Igor Lukes, PhD.

In cooperation with the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in New York.

Professor Lukes will explore the communist conquest of Czechoslovakia from the perspective of American diplomats and intelligence officers who served in the U.S. Embassy from the spring of 1945 to 1949, as presented in his latest book On the Edge of the Cold War: American Diplomats and Spies in Postwar Prague, just published by Oxford University Press. The book will be available for purchase at the event.

Dr. Igor Lukes teaches history and international relations at Boston University.  He has written about Europe between the world wars, the Cold War, intelligence, and contemporary developments in East Central Europe and Russia.  His publications include Rudolf Slansky: His Trial and Trials and Czechoslovakia, Between Stalin and Hitler: The Diplomacy of Edvard Benes in the 1930s. Lukes is also a frequent political commentator on Radio Prague and Czech Television.


Latest News from the Pyramids: Czech research in Abusir

Monday, April 30, 2012 at 6:30 PM

A slide lecture by Prof. Miroslav Bárta, PhD.

In cooperation with the Czech Consulate NY

Abusir is one of the most important archaeological sites in Egypt. The Czech Institute of Egyptology worked here for more than 50 years. It contains royal tombs from the 5th dynasty (Old Kingdom), mastabas (tombs) of high officials, as well as shaft tombs from the Saite-Persian period.

Prof. Barta teaches at the Institute of Egyptology at Charles University in Prague. He led the first satellite mapping of the pyramid fields of Abusir, Saqqara and Dahshur in 2002. In the years 2003-2004, he taught at University of Pennsylvania, and since 2010 he is the head of the Czech Archaeological concession at Abusir.



Wednesday, March 28, 2012 at 6:30 PM

A slide lecture by Prof. Eugen Strouhal, PhD, DrSc.

In cooperation with the Czech Consulate in New York

This lecture explored the beginnings of scientific medicine in ancient Egyptian civilization. Thirteen ancient medical papyri recorded the level of the empiric knowledge of anatomy, patho-physiology and therapy. Prof. Strouhal presented the amazingly advanced surgical practices in ancient Egypt while the internal medicine and gynecology still relied mostly on religious rituals and remedies of plant, animal and mineral origin.

Prof. Strouhal is a leading expert on Egyptian medicine. He has degrees in medicine, archaeology and anthropology. He worked for 24 years at the Náprstek Museum in Prague and taught anthropology at West Bohemian University in Pilsen. He lectures paleo-pathology and history of medicine at Charles University Medical School in Prague.



Sat, Dec 3 at 6PM

Download the InvitationPhotographs of Prague from 1932-1965 by renowned photographer Jan Lukas, and by his daughter Helena Lukas Martemucci from 1993-2011. Photos from Martemucci’s series Art, Citizenship, Healing, taken during her Fulbright Scholarship in 1998-1999, will also be presented. Exhibition open Dec 3 – 23, 2011
at the Bohemian National Hall

Followed by a Fullbright Alumni concert at 7:30 PM.


SVU Recommends: GOLEM. A play by Vít Hořejš

Nov 17 – Dec 4, 2011

Czechoslovak American Marionette Theater at La MaMa Theater, 66 East Fourth Street (Ellen Stewart Theater), NYC

Century-old and contemporary life-size wooden Czech marionettes interact with puppeteers, klezmer musicians and dancers.

Special Benefit Performance and Reception was held on November 18, 2011, under the Auspices of Ambassador Petr Gandalovič and Consul General Eliška Žigová.


Recreating the GOLEM: From Prague to the Simpsons

Tuesday, November 8 at 7PM
A slide lecture by Mark Podwal on how succeeding generations have recreated the golem legend to suit the times. The lecture will touch on the first mention of golems in Biblical and Talmudic sources, the origins of Prague’s golem legend, the transformed image of the Prague golem from servant to protector in the early 20th century, and numerous depictions of golems in book illustration, fine art, and film, including the Simpsons TV episode You Gotta Know When to Golem.

Mark Podwal is the author and illustrator of numerous books. Most of these works – Podwal’s own as well as those he has illustrated for others – typically focus on Jewish legend, history and tradition. Podwal illustrated Elie Wiesel’s retelling of the Golem legend, as well as his own children’s book “Golem: A Giant Made of Mud.” He is currently designing new embroidered textiles for Prague’s Altneuschul.


Czech Archeological Discoveries in Egypt

Wednesday, November 2, 2011 at 7PM
A slide lecture by Sylva Pavlasová, Czech Egyptologist and Consul of the Czech Republic

Sylva Pavlasová studied Egyptology and Prehistoric and Early Historic Archaeology at Charles University in Prague. As a curator of the Egyptology Department of the Náprstek Ethnic History Museum in Prague, she produced several exhibitions on Ancient Egypt, including a special exhibition for the blind which was also shown in Slovakia, Egypt, Australia and the United States. She served as cultural attaché in Egypt (1999- 2003), deputy chief of mission and chargé d´affaires at the Czech Embassy in Lebanon (2003-2006), a specialist at Middle East Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affaires in Prague (2006-2009).