Modern Czech Literature & Culture

SLAV-C 364 — Spring 2023

LH 023
Days and Times
Tuesday/Thursday, 3:00pm - 4:15pm
Course Description

Czech literature and history are intimately bound, and the history of the Czechs has often been a painful one. For centuries, literature has served as a means to respond to historical events, from the repression of the Hapsburg Empire through the totalitarian regimes of the Nazis and Soviets. This survey of modern Czech literature begins immediately after World War II and takes us through the Alcoholic Realism of Bohumil Hrabal, the different Modernisms of Milan Kundera and Vladimír Páral, the Absurdism of ex-dissident/President Václav Havel, and up to today. The purpose of the course is to introduce students to some of the finest culturally engaged novels of Central and Eastern Europe, novels that open up worlds that are recognizable, yet curiously different from our own.