Friday, November 21, 2008

EVENT: Monday, Dec. 1---Panel Discussion: Europe Confronts Its Past

Panel Discussion: Europe Confronts Its Past

Igor Lukes
University Professor and Professor of International Relations and History, Boston University; Honorary Consul of the Czech Republic in Boston/

Martin Simecka
Editor-in-chief of Respekt,* a weekly newsmagazine in the Czech Republic, reporting on domestic and foreign political and economic issues, as well as on science and culture.

*On October 13, Respekt published an article by a historian from the Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes reporting that a team of historians had uncovered a police document identifying Czech-born Milan Kundera as having informed in 1950 on Miroslav Dvoracek, who served 14 years in prison after being uncovered as a spy. Respekt has refused to apologize to author Milan Kundera for publishing allegations he once informed on a Western spy.

Introduction: Peter Muzila

Honorary Consul of the Republic of Slovakia in Boston

This event takes place in conjunction with a panel exhibit prepared by the Ministry of Culture and Slovak National Museum entitled "The Magic Number 8 in the History of Slovakia."

Slovak history is interesting in that many important and pivotal events took place during years that end in the number eight. These crucial years include 1848, 1918, 1938, 1948 and 1968. The year 1989 also belongs in this category because the historical turning point that was the November Velvet Revolution of 1989 actually began in 1988. There are important internal connections between the "8" years and their events. The Slovaks' national emancipation process began with the uprising in the revolutionary year 1848 and culminated in 1918 with the founding of Czechoslovakia. This common state of Czechs and Slovaks was then exposed in 1938 to a challenging historical test. The historical ties between 1948, 1968 and 1989 are also strong. They mark the founding, crisis and fall of the communist system in the former Czechoslovakia. In terms of their meaning for history, the "eight"-year anniversaries that fall in 2008 are a natural reflection of both Slovak history in a broader context and of that history's connections to the present. This is also the goal of the exhibition, The Magic Number Eight in the History of Slovakia, whose organizers seek to improve mutual knowledge and understanding among nations.

6:00 PM
Boston University Photonics Center
8 St. Mary's Street, 9th Floor

In cooperation with the Honorary Consulate of the Republic of Slovakia
Free and open to the public | Reception to follow
More Information: 617-358-2778 or

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