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Leaving or Staying: Personal Stories of 20th Century Czechs and Slovaks

(This article expired 25.12.2013.)

The Czechoslovak Society of Arts and Sciences in cooperation with the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in New York and the Consulate General of the Slovak Republic in New York organized on April 23, 2013 at the Bohemian National Hall the lecture titled „Leaving or Staying“.

Two oral historians, Prof. Miroslav Vaněk from the Oral History Center of the Institute for Contemporary History in Prague and Ms. Rosamund Johnston from the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library (Cedar Rapids, IA), presented their research concerning the reasons for Czechs and Slovaks to emigrate to the USA during the Normalization period (70´s and 80´s) as well as the reasons of those who stayed in Czechoslovakia behind the Iron Curtain.

Questions such as „What motivates people to leave or stay in their homeland? or How do their stories add meaning and understanding to historical events?“ were complemented by very  interesting presentation of interviews with not only Czech and Slovak immigrants but also with the representatives of former Communist regime and dissidents.

The lecture was attended by more than 50 guests who took very active part in the subsequent discussion, proving the importance of the chosen topic.

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Leaving or Staying Leaving or Staying