Iva Drápalová has lived through, and documented, some of the most important moments of modern Czech history. Cut off from her family at boarding school - and then university - in Britain throughout the Second World War, she picked up the English that led her to the job for which she is now best known. Having returned to her homeland, Iva Drápalová became the Associated Press’s woman in the Czech capital following on from the Prague Spring of 1968. Mrs Drápalová, now in her eighties, has just finished writing her memoirs.
In last week’s From the Archives, we heard how German troops marched into Prague on March 15 1939. The next day, Edvard Benes, who had resigned as Czechoslovakia’s president in the wake of the Munich Agreement, and was in exile in London, told Britain’s Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain that from now on, he would be leading the resistance against the German occupation. Five months later, war broke out and at the end of 1939 the BBC began its broadcasts in Czech.
In Business News this week: the Czech Republic’s current account posts a surprise surplus of 4.8 billion crowns; Škoda Auto’s sales are up by nine percent; thirteen percent of Czech firms are planning foreign expansion this year; guest numbers at luxury Czech hotels rose in 2007, and public broadcaster Czech Television generated more than it expected from license fees last year.
A recent ruling by the Czech Advertising Standards Authority has stated that a billboard advert for an energy drink featuring a picture of a sleeping foreign minister Karel Schwarzenberg is unethical. This represents one in a series of similar rulings by the authority. So is the regulation of advertising in the Czech Republic going too far or not far enough?
Pavel Bárta, the spokesman for the Czech Ice Hockey Association, is a former hockey journalist and author with more than 20 years experience. His most recent book covers everything from the 1920s in Czech hockey to the Olympics, including the Czechs’ famous gold win at Nagano ten years ago. In this edition of One on One: a look back at that tournament as well as Pavel Bárta’s early career. When we met at his Prague office recently, the former Bruins fan admitted to a lifelong fascination with North America’s NHL and he began by telling me what it
Czech Television said a record 1.37 million people had watched the presidential election live on Friday afternoon. The public broadcaster’s digital channel CT24 also saw high audience figures: 3.1 percent of the TV audience watched its broadcasts, which were the same as on the terrestrial station CT1. Czech Television has won plaudits for its comprehensive and uninterrupted coverage of both elections.
In 2007 almost all of the Czech Republic’s national newspapers began offering their readers cheap DVDs. Such movies are not free supplements as you might get in the UK for instance, but are sold separately at an extremely low cost. These DVDs have become a real phenomenon, with almost 60 million entering distribution last year. What does this mean for the industry? And can the boom last?
Civic Democrat deputy Eva Dundáčková says the couples who take part in a TV wife-swap programme have come close to committing the crime of abandoning their children. The MP, a member of the Chamber of Deputies family committee, made the comment in a Czech Radio interview. Last week the committee wrote to TV Nova asking the station to drop the show “Výměna manželek”. However, the programme’s director said the children involved had given their consent, adding that it was filmed under the supervision of psychologists.
Barbora Tachecí has been fired as the director of Czech Radio’s biggest station, Radiožurnál. Ms Tachecí had come in for some criticism for changes introduced to the station at the beginning of this year; hundreds of listeners sent complaints to both Czech Radio and the council which oversees it. No figures are currently available regarding the number of listeners in the period since Ms Tachecí’s changes were implemented.
Céčka, tuzex and trvalá – for those growing up in the communist Czechoslovakia these were a part of daily life. As of tomorrow, you can find out more about those trends in a new series called Retro, produced by the Czech Television. Why are Czechs suddenly so interested in looking back at their recent past? Ruth Fraňková went to ask Jan Rozkošný, the producer of the new show.
Olga Lomová: Western misconceptions could let China export much of its system and ultimately contribute to our enslavement
Hitler no ‘gentleman’, but court rules Czech state need not apologize for president’s claim Ferdinand Peroutka said so
Bertha von Suttner – Prague-born peace campaigner whose ideas on cooperation and disarmament continue to have lasting effect
Czechia now ahead of Spain in GDP per capita, but still below EU average
Prague City Hall terminates memorandum with e-scooter operator Lime
Czech agencies smash spy ring operated by “very aggressive” Russians
More than a third of over 40s believes their lives were better under communism, study shows
Rare Terezín concentration camp artefacts found in attic of private home