Prague

Overview

Travel to one of the most beautiful cities in the world in the company of its finest writers. Walk the mysterious nighttime streets of Prague with Franz Kafka and Jaroslav Hasek, eavesdrop on intimate conversations in restaurants and lively beer halls with Karel Capek and Bohumil Hrabal, listen to jazz in stylish nightclubs with Josef Skvorecky. The stories in this volume — many of which appear in English for the first time — will take you on a personal odyssey through the city's stormy past to its dynamic ...

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Overview

Travel to one of the most beautiful cities in the world in the company of its finest writers. Walk the mysterious nighttime streets of Prague with Franz Kafka and Jaroslav Hasek, eavesdrop on intimate conversations in restaurants and lively beer halls with Karel Capek and Bohumil Hrabal, listen to jazz in stylish nightclubs with Josef Skvorecky. The stories in this volume — many of which appear in English for the first time — will take you on a personal odyssey through the city's stormy past to its dynamic present. For the traveler who wishes to experience something of its essence, Prague illuminates the heart and soul of a great city. Contributors include Michal Ajvaz, Karel Capek, Ivan Divis, Jaroslav Hasek, Daniela Hodrova, Bohumil Hrabal, Alois Jirasek, Franz Kafka, Jiri Karasek ze Lvovic, Egon Erwin Kisch, Ivan Klima, Jiri Kovtun, Frantisek Langer, Gustav Meyrink, Jan Neruda, Karel Pecka, Ota Pavel, Josef Skvorecky, Jindriska Smetanova, Jachym Topol, and Jiri Weil.

Magnificent stories by many of the finest Czech writers--including Franz Kafka, Bohumil Hrabal, Jaroslav Hasek, Egon Irwin Kisch, and others--provide fascinating cultural insights for travelers to Prague. Here are crime stories, love stories, legends, sketches, and anecdotes for anyone seeking to travel to the very heart of one of Europe's great cities. Includes a map of the city.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Novelist Ivan Klma explains in ``The Spirit of Prague'' that his native city has inspired people's creativity by the blending of three cultures that lived side by side for decades, even centuries: Czech, German and Jewish. It is also a city in which ``the best people in the country were often imprisoned, tortured or executed.'' Czech writers deal with such injustices with a subversive sense of humor. It shines in Bohumil Hrabal's description of ``The Hotel Parz,'' Josef Skvorecky's rendition of President Clinton's sax playing at the Reduta jazz club, Egon Erwin Kisch's ``The Case of the Washerwoman,'' and Jaroslav Hasek's sendup of The Society of Teetotalers. To see human comedy in the midst of great suffering allowed the spirit of Prague to prevail, and that is the genius of the authors presented here. These 24 stories, arranged by the areas of the city they illuminate, are a literary banquet for readers who already know and love ``the city of a hundred spires.'' As such, they are designed, according to editor Wilson, to reveal ``a deeper truth about the psyche of the people of Prague than perhaps direct description could.'' Also included are biographies of contributors and translators and a historical chronology of Prague. (Feb.)
Library Journal
This book is a compilation of short stories set in or around the city of Prague. As readers wanders through the imaginations of the authors, who include Franz Kafka, Josef Skvorecky, Bohumil Hrabal, Jaroslav Hasek, Karel Capek, and Daniela Hodrova, they will find themselves assuming an understanding of this magnificent city's essense and history. The stories, myths, legends, and vignettes explore the city's streets, palaces, cathedrals, restaurants, and beer halls; the ambience and soul of Prague is revealed. This work is not a travel guide but a collection of literary pieces set in a mysterious city over the past century. It would be great fun to read before traveling to Prague or while there, but the short stories stand on their as individual works of art. For comprehensive travel and literature collections.-Melinda Stivers Leach, Precision Editorial Srvcs., Wondervu, Col.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781883513016
  • Publisher: Whereabouts Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/1995
  • Series: Travelers' Literary Companions Series
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 629,502
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.18 (h) x 0.74 (d)

Table of Contents

Map of Prague
Preface
Prologue
I See a Great City 3
Petrin
Bells 11
Hradcany
The First Vision 16
Mala Strana
What Shall We Do with It? 26
The Little Bulldog 33
Kampa
American Heating 53
Charles Bridge
The Sword of St. Wenceslas 60
A Psychiatric Mystery 68
The Old Jewish Quarter
The Golem 74
The Old Town
The Legend of the Old Town Clock 84
Description of a Struggle 91
GM 105
The Hotel Pariz 114
The Case of the Washerwoman 125
The Magic Flute 134
The Past 140
Prague
The Receipt 143
Mendelssohn Is on the Roof 153
A Prague Eclogue 165
A Race Through Prague 180
Invasion Day 193
A Visit to the Train Station 199
Tenor Sax Solo from Washington 209
Epilogue
The Spirit of Prague 214
A Prague Chronology 225
Glossary 229
Contributors 231
Translators 238
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