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KKA2: Jiří Weil

Jiří Weil is one of the most translated Czech writers of the 20th century. Despite this fact, academic studies in the wake of the Velvet Revolution have not paid him the attention he deserves and have very often been content simply to analyse his most famous book, Life with a Star.

It now appears that the situation is changing and critics and Czech readers are rediscovering “early” Weil, who brought the interwar avant-garde into contact with Soviet revolutionary art and helped adapt its methods and observations to a Czech context. The culmination of this period of his work is the book Moscow Border, which a year before the publication of Return from the USSR by André Gide offered a critique of the situation in Stalin’s Russia as well as of the aesthetic principles of socialist realism, which the regime at that time attempted to apply to Soviet art. The A2 Criticism Club will examine the reasons why Weil’s work from the first half of the 20th century remains in the shadow of his later output, what lies behind the renewed interest in this part of his work, and what it has to offer the modern readership.

The debate will be participated in by Pavel Janáček (Institute of Czech Literature), Markéta Kittlová (iLiteratura.cz) and Pavel Siostrzonek (Analogon). The evening will be chaired by Jan Bělíček.

KKA2: Jiří Weil
Tuesday 22 September 7pm

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