Compact archive October 26, 2007

Milan Kundera awarded Czech National Literature Prize: “I'm moved”

Czech National Prize for Literature and Translation are prizes given annually for an outstanding Czech literary work and a translation into Czech.

The National Prize for Translation was won by Antonin Pridal. 72 nowadays, Pridal translates from Spanish and English, he translated e.g. Federico Garcia Lorca and William Shakespeare dramas. According to the jury, he significantly contributed to the ‘culture in translation’.

Czech National Literature Prize goes to Pavel Kundera. On 25th of October 2007 the ceremony hall was full, even when everybody knew in advance Kundera won’t be present. However he at least send a voice file, which was played at the ceremony. He emphasized work of Zden Skvorecka, who „… selflessly managed a poor little publishing house in Canada … knowing the worst curse of Czech cultural history: systematic breaking of continuity … she published all the forbidden authors … Everything would be different without her.“

At the end he thanked everybody for the prize and admitted he is moved deeply, even when he couldn’t be there.


Czech Radar Referendum Rejected

radar, an illustration photo The Chamber of Deputies of the Czech Republic, according to expectations, rejected the possibility of referendum about American radar base in the Czech Republic. It is being promoted by the KSCM (Communist Party of Bohemia and Moravia) and CSSD (Czech Social Democratic Party).

The draft law about the referendum to the base, prepared by CSSD and KSCM representatives, had minimal chances to pass in the first place. It would ask for 120 votes (to pass), however CSSD and KSCM do not dispose with so many seats; in the end 76 of the total 144 present voted for.

According to a sociologic research, most of Czechs do not like the idea of an American radar in the Czech Republic. Washington wants to hear the decision next year. Parliament will be, most probably, the decision maker for the radar question.


New 'National library team' committee should decide the fate of National Library in Prague

Prague council discussed Kaplicky’s Blob yesterday. Few dozens of fans of the Octopus (National Library design by Kapilcky) have gathered in front of the building, where they wanted to hand the petition for support of Blob over to Pavel Bem. There are already three thousands of people signed under it.

When the demonstrants were told about the idea of a committee, formed of more than thirty people, that should decide the fate of the National library, they didn’t sound very happy. However the presidium of the so called ‘National library team’ are eager to debate.

‘National library team’
Pavel Bem – Prague Mayor
Vlastimil Jezek – Director of the National Library
Jan Kaplicky – Author of Blob project
Borek Votava – Manager of Prague City Development Division
Jan Knezinek – Director of Preservation of Monuments Board
Bohdana Stoklasova – National Library

For this presidium works three expert groups architects, preservationists, lawyers. According to Mayor Bem the groups should work for two, three or four months.


Get Punked in Prague

get punked prague club night dnb On Friday 26th October you can witness the skills of Shimon of RAM Records (playing in the Czech Republic for the second time). This night is the Czech premiere for Kenny Ken of Mix and Blend Recordings.

The renowned event of broken beats called Get Punked will take place in Prague for the first time ever. In the previous years, GP was situated in Olomouc where the reactions of the crowd were more than great. A lot can be now expected from the Prague premiere.

Previous Get Punked parties hosted artists such as Simon Bassline, Ed Rush, Grooverider or Fresh, to name a few.

26th October 2007 at Abaton, Na Kosince 8, Prague 8. The price is 250 CZK (9 €).


New Law Proposal on Artificial Insemination of Czech Republic Lesbians

Lesbian laws in the Czech Republic. The new draft law which allows to ask for a test-tube baby for women who have no heterosexual partner. That means either lonely, or lesbian. Such an act is not possible yet. Only heterosexual couples can ask for the so called assisted reproduction so far.

Speaker of the Ministry of Health Tomas Cikrt announced the law was prepared especially for lonely living women, who pine for a baby. “…but if the baby grows up with a lesbian couple, I see no problem in it. There is no proof it would have a negative influence on the child’s development.”

A practitioner from Prague center of artificial insemination Gest said, he can imagine such a practice, but he also stated the law skips one level. Adoption by a couple living in registered partnership should be allowed first. Once it would be legal, he sees no problem in artificial insemination law.

If the bill would be passed, it could be valid since 2009. However there can be one significant obstacle of such a law – the KDU-CSL party (The Christian and Democratic Union) who are long-term supporters of the ‘traditional family model’.