The Czech Republic

Some generations of Slovak intellectuals used to study in Prague for different reasons and in different time periods. Some of these intellectuals create nowadays an inseparable part of cultural heritage of both nations. As two independent states were established in 1993 – the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic – we have to include to the compatriotic literature this already-mentioned group of Slovak authors living and writing in the Czech Republic. It is particularly Prague which offers a creative background to Slovak literary life in the Czech Republic and which through local Slovak associations, societies, organizations, periodicals and activities of some enthusiastic and learned people shapes the mosaic of compatriotic literature in foreign countries.

Compatriotic literature in the Czech Republic is represented by an anthology Slovenská literatúra v Prahe 2000 (Slovak literature in Prague 2000). This anthology presents seventeen current Slovak “Prague” authors and is a climax of a cycle of literary evenings bearing the same name which were organised by the Slovak-Czech Club. It is also necessary to mention at this point the publications of Emil Charous Pražské inšpirácie slovenských spisovateľov (Prague inspirations of Slovak writers) and an anthology of Slovak poetry in foreign countries – Medzi dvoma domovmi (Between two homes), which was published by the Slovak Foundation Matica Slovenská and in cooperation with the Literature Information Centre and the World Association of Slovaks Abroad in 2008.

Slovak literature in Prague was always a lively phenomenon and thus it has also stayed after two separate countries were founded. There are some Slovak prose and poetry writers living and working in the Czech Republic as well as authors of literature for children and the youth and playwrights. In 2002 a separate Slovak Literary Club in the Czech Republic was founded that connects more than forty writers and it is a collective member of the Czech Community of writers and Slovak PEN Centre. The Slovak Literary Club in the Czech Republic together with the Czechoslovak Club and both PEN Clubs issue a literary quarterly, the Czechoslovak review Zrkadlenie – Zrcadlení (Reflections) and organise Jan Kollar’s Literary Competition. A monthly Slovenské dotyky (Slovak Contacts) issued by the Slovak-Czech Club comprises a supplement Literárny dotyky (Literary Contacts). Among individuals who actively create works of literature in Prague or in the Czech environment we shall mention Mr.and Mrs. Feldek who have two homes and who first of all live in Bratislava then in Prague or writers such as Vojtech Zamarovsky, Natasa Tanska, Tatjana Lehenová, Vladimir Skalsky, Andrej Stankovic, Dagmar Gregorova-Prasilova, Jozef Junas, Jan Rakytka, Peter Stolicny and Marian Vanek who significantly contribute to the context of the compatriotic literature in the Czech Republic.