Animal rescue stations around the Czech Republic are filling up with
hedgehogs. The animal shelter in Prague’s Jinonice district, for
instance, took in more than 650 hedgehogs since the start of November.
Although animal activists appreciate people’s good intentions in helping
the spiny mammals, they also say not every hedgehog found in the wild
really needs help.
With three books published just last year, Marek Toman is currently one of
the most prolific Czech authors. He last spoke to Radio Prague almost three
years ago after he published a novel narrated by a building – Černín
Palace, seat of the Czech Foreign Ministry. Since then, he has written two
other novels closely connected to historical Prague.
In Magazine: Prague among top 20 most visited cities in the world; police
officers complain their bulletproof vests aren’t bulletproof; a minor
takes two buses on a joyride; a Czech bug enthusiast boasts a 10cm
cockroach and the most bizarre things Czechs leave behind in taxis.
Hello and welcome to a fresh edition of SoundCzech, Radio Prague’s Czech
language course in which you can learn Czech idioms with the help of song
lyrics. Today’s song, sung by Markéta Konvičková, is called Z ráje
jsem utekla – I ran away from heaven. The words to listen out for are
ráj and peklo.
Spotlight this week comes from Uherské Hradiště, a charming picturesque
town in south-east Moravia. Like so many places in this part of the world,
Uherské Hradiště has a rich and complex history. As tour guide Lenka
Kornelová explains, the town was established nearly eight centuries ago in
reaction to the turbulent events of that time and the city actually gets
its name - meaning "Hungarian Fortress" - from this period.
Pavel Kohout is an economist who seems seldom out of the media. He recently
created a stir when he announced he was leaving the government’s advisory
committee, NERV, and criticised government willingness to tackle
multi-billion crown corruption in public tenders. That furore appears to
have blown over and Mr. Kohout seems on course to give further advice to
the government and the new political party, Public Affairs.
The Czech Foreign Minister has announced a wide ranging review of foreign
policy to take account both of changes in the Czech Republic and those in
the wider world. The review comes with the jury still out on whether a more
streamlined EU foreign policy can deliver, the outcome of Afghanistan still
unclear and questions still up in the air about relations with Russia.
The Czech Republic is keeping abreast with the most developed countries in
the world in terms of sustainable development, suggests the 2019 Europe
Sustainable Development Report, which identifies policy priorities for the
European Union to achieve Sustainable Development Goals and implement the
Paris Climate Agreement.
There are many places in US where you will find Bohemian cemeteries,
established wherever Czechs settled in the country. The Bohemian National
Cemetery in Chicago was formed in 1877 and, with its 120 acres it is one of
the largest. Chuck Michalek, Bohemian National Cemetery Association board
member and delegate, took Radio Prague’s editor-in-chief Klára Stejskalová
through the grounds and began by explaining how the cemetery was
The young Czech scientist Marie Šabacká has spent a considerable part of
her working life in the Arctic, Antarctic and other remote areas, studying
ecology of polar microorganisms and the impact of climate change on local
ecosystems. This year, she received a prestigious grant from the Neuron
foundation to explore tropical glaciers in Africa.
[18-11-2019 12:56 UTC]
Celebrations of the 30th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution culminated on
Wenceslas Square on Sunday. Some of the most important protests of that
dramatic period took place in that location.
Sociologist Jan Hartl set up Czechoslovakia’s first modern-day polling
agency, STEM, in 1990 and has been closely monitoring domestic politics and
society ever since. When we spoke, the conversation took in Czech
politicians’ shifting attitude to opinion surveys, Václav Havel’s
private discussion circle and the “cautious nature” of the country’s
Thirty years ago Czechs took to the streets to demonstrate for freedom and
democracy, for the chance to speak their mind without reprisals, to vote in
free elections and shape their own future. Today they are taking stock of
the country’s successes and failures, of how far they have come along the
road to a liberal democracy and market economy and whether the ideals of
1989 are still alive in people’s hearts and minds.
The date is November 17, 1989, eight days after the fall of the Berlin
Wall. A cordon of Czechoslovak riot police blocks the path of thousands of
university students staging a march through Prague, calling for democracy
– and freedom. As police truncheons begin to rain down on their heads,
they chant “We have bare hands” – we are unarmed. Hundreds are
bruised and bloodied; one student reportedly dead. The Velvet Revolution,
as it came to be known, had begun.
At the turn of the millennium, the group ‘minus123minut’ was among the
most innovative and important of Czech bands, known for their live shows
and heady mix of rock, jazz, blues and funk. The band was named Discovery
of the Year in 1999, cut a few LPs, toured Europe, and then broke up in
2009 after the release of their album ‘Dream’. A few years ago,
original singer-guitarist Zdeněk Bína and lyricist-bassist Fredrik
Janáček reformed the band, along with Slovak drummer and vibraphone
player Dano Šoltis. Today’s show features their newly released comeback
album, ‘Les’ (Forest).