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Photo: Maironis Museum Kaunas
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Exhibition on the 100 anniversary of the novel on the Good Soldier Švejk by Hašek in Kaunas

Maironis Museum of Lithuanian Literature in Kaunas in cooperation with the Czech Embassy in Lithuania and the Prague City Museum commemorates the anniversary of the novel “The Fateful Adventures of the Good Soldier Švejk” by the Czech writer Jaroslav Hašek (1883–1923). The exhibition will last till the end of the year.

The novel is very well known in Lithuania, several of Hašek's translations have been published here, and the current Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrid Šimonyte, who often quotes Švejk in her speeches, is a great admirer of Švejk.

The exhibition in the Kaunas Museum focuses not only on Hašek's novel, but also on the personality of the author Jaroslav Hašek and the influence of Hašek's work on Czech culture.

The character of Švejk was created before the First World War. The first play, written by J. Hašek, was called “Fortress”, and it featured some hard-working but foolish servant of Emperor Charles IV, Josef Švejk, trying to take over the fortress of Monfalcone. He obeyed every command, even the stupidest. In 1912, J. Hašek published a military short story “The Good Soldier Švejk and Other Strange Stories”. The most significant work of the writer about Švejk, created before the novel, is a series of short stories “The Commander of the City of Bugulma”, which has been published in the magazine “Tribuna” since January, 1921, to March, 1921. In 1921, at the “U Pánků” pub in Žižkov, J. Hašek stated: “I will release Švejk myself and will not give it to anyone.” In March, 1921, the first volume of the pamphlet, “The Fateful Adventures of the Good Soldier Švejk in a World War”, was published at Neubert's printing house in Prague.

Švejk - exhibition