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Topic: Literature of the first half of the 20th century (62 records)

Karel Poláček

Czech writer, humourist, journalist and film director of Jewish descent. He belonged to the authors of the “Lidové noviny school”, who used a documentary and journalistic approach in their works.

Gabriela Preissová

Dramatist, writer, dramaturg of the National Theatre. The operatic version by the composer Leoš Janáček of the original realist drama Její pastorkyňa brought her work worldwide fame.

Jaroslav Seifert

Poet, writer, journalist, translator, winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature (1984) and a leading representative of Czech avant-garde. He was one of the founders of Poetism. He had a complicated relationship with the communist regime. He was one of the signatories of Charter 77.

Antonín Sova

Czech poet and prose writer, whose multiple talent allowed him to combine in his works a wide range of styles that were used in the Czech cultural environment from 1890s until the First World War.

Antal Stašek

Writer, publicist, translator and lawyer. His work reflects the development of Czech literature from the late Romanticism of the May School to the inter-war Social Realism.


Czech fine arts and literary association of the second generation of Czech symbolists active between 1910 and 1912, whose members were interested in man’s inner condition, were influenced by occultism and magic and tried to capture higher consciousness.

František Xaver Šalda

Literary, theatre and art critic, essayist, writer and dramatist, a leading figure of Czech Modernism. He advocated the independence of art from non-aesthetic connections and the idea of criticism as a creative activity.

Fráňa Šrámek

Poet, prose and drama writer and publicist who had a great influence on the development of Czech literature in early 20th century. He is one of the founders of modern Czech poetic language.

Jindřich Štyrský

Painter and graphic artist, the most important representative of interwar avant-garde and Surrealism in Czech culture, co-founder of surrealist groups and of Artificialism (together with Toyen). He also worked as a photographer.

Josef Švejk

Fictive character from Jaroslav Hašek’s works, especially from the four-part novel The Good Soldier Švejk (Osudy dobrého vojáka Švejka, 1921–1923), which became a part of Czech literary tradition. The most famous visual representation of Švejk was created by the illustrator Josef Lada.

Karel Toman

Poet, journalist and translator, preeminent representative of the post-symbolistic generation of poets. Rejected the security of a bourgeois life in favour of artistic independence.

Umělecká beseda

The first Czech art society, in which writers, fine artists and musicians could meet from the 1860s.

Václav Řezáč

Prose writer, poet and screenwriter, who became known for his psychological novels about power and its abuse, but ended his career as the author of the best known 1950s Czechoslovak socialist realist novels.

Bedřich Václavek

Literary and theatre critic and theoretician, Marxist aesthetician, member of the Devětsil group and one of the ideologues of Czech Socialist Realism. He was one of the leading representatives of the Czechoslovak left in literary theory.

Josef Váchal

Painter, graphic artist and writer, also a sculptor and engraver, a talented drawer, illustrator and typographer, who created original types and invented new graphic methods.

Vladislav Vančura

Writer, dramatist, film director. He was one of the founding members of the avant-garde group Devětsil. His writing is characterised primarily by intense visual and stylistic imagery.

Jiří Weil

Prose writer, journalist and translator whose works focus primarily on the relationship between individual and totalitarian power, especially during the Second World War.

Jan Weiss

Prose writer whose works are on the border between psychological and fantastic literature. He is often mentioned as one of the founders of Czech science fiction.

Zikmund Winter

Prose writer and historian, one of the founders of Czech cultural history. In his works he focused on depicting conflicts set against historical background.

Jiří Wolker

Poet, prose writer, translator and publicist, leading representative of the so-called proletarian poetry and the interwar generation generally.

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