Working Bibliography of Czech and
Czech-American History



Alexander, Edward P. 1997. The museum in America: innovators and pioneers. American Association for State and Local History book series. Walnut Creek: AltaMira Press.


A deftly written collection by Alexander, The Museum in America, purposefully arranges chapters that build on the history of the American Museum, and flushes out those key individuals who initiated the current science and art of the museum. The aim of Alexander is to cover those who focused on educating and entertaining its public audiences rather than a strict goal of organizing and collecting objects and such for scholars and professionals. Reading this volume would benefit those seeking to support their knowledge in the history of public museums, and it would act as a good reference for those looking towards creative models for public history. (JRWOBIG)


Ash, Timothy. "Mitteleuropa?" Daedalus 119 (1990): 1-21.


Examines the history and implications of West German policy on the political restoration in Central Europe citing its relevance to the political demands of governments in Hungary, Czechoslovakia and Poland. Controversies over Eastern spiritual-political structure; Emphasis on intellectual-political debates in West Germany concerning the restoration of Central Europe; Indications of political history and international relations. (C.L.)


Boych, Vladimir, Martin Madl, and Jirini Langhammerova. A Thousand Years of Czech Culture : Riches from the National Museum in Prague. 1st ed. New York: University of Washington Press, 1996.


A Thousand Years of Czech Culture is really a great source. It offers a comprehensive look at the Czech people from the middle ages to the present. It offers a variety of opinions and expertise because each section is written by a different author. These authors vary from American scholars to Czech scholars. The topics discussed range from history, to art, to religion, to music, to theater, to folk art and culture. The most interesting thing about this book is that it is based on a Czech exhibit organized in Salem, North Carolina. This exhibit was done in conjunction with the National Museum in Prague. This origin makes this book very accessible to the typical, non-scholarly audience. The back of the book contains an entire catalog of artifacts from Prague used in the exhibit. A description of the artifacts including their cultural significance is also included. This book offers some beautiful colored visuals of regal and ordinary things. This source is very well documented and includes a selected bibliography. (E.S.)



Cravens, Craig Stephen. 2006. Culture and customs of the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Culture and customs of Europe. Westport, Conn: Greenwood Press.


Giorgi,Liana. The Post -Socialist Media: What Power the West?. Brookfield: Ashgate Publishing Company, 1995.


Kann,Robert A.. A History of the Habsburg Empire 1526-1918. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1980.


Demetz,Peter. Prague in Black & Gold: Scenes from the Life of a European City. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2008.


A Prague native and Yale Professor Emeritus, Demetz writes a colorful account of Czech history. Unlike other books, his time frame begins in the 13th century and ceases just after liberation in 1945. Demetz dedicates about two thirds of his work focusing on intertwining the cultural representations in myth, literature, social and religious affiliations with political activity prior to the 19th century. This allows the reader to understand how culture and politics work together and influenced the formation and progression of the nation. His bibliography is extensive and provides great resources to exploring his presentation. I think this selection is extremely helpful for project because it identifies in depth the less discussed early periods of Czech history. (MO)


Demetz,Peter. Prague in Danger, The Years of German Occupation, 1939-45. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2008.


Peter Demetz was a professor of Germanic literature at Yale University. is a sequel to another book he authored, He writes this book from his own personal experience. Half Jewish and living in Prague during the Nazi takeover, Demetz offers his private stories to the public. This account begins in 1939 when the Czechoslovakian government was in danger. Describing the day of occupation, the beginning of the Protectorate, terror and resistance, and finally moving to the end of the Protectorate, he exposes Czechoslovakia and himself. Published in 2008, this book is very recent, which can bring modern day reflections into history. Demetz explains a brief timeframe from a personal perspective, but also supports his memories with accurate history of the Protectorate. This is a fine book for a more personal touch of history. (A.B.)
This selection is Prague in Black and Gold's successor. Like Prague in Black and Gold, Demetz combines historical facts with cultural experience to present the horror of the Nazi regime. He explores the intense day-to-day life of fear, hunger and yearning for freedom, until one day six years later, it finally came. In this book, he includes a small section of pictures and a sufficient bibliography. This source will be helpful for researching the impact of German occupation on Czech culture and provide good source for including Jewish culture and Czech relations into our project. (M.O.)


Dowling,Maria. Brief Histories: Czechoslovakia. London: Hodder Arnold, 2002.


Fichtner,Paula S.. The Habsburg Empire: From Dynasticism to Multinationalism. Malabar, Florida: Krieger Publishing Company, 1997.


In part one of this resource, Fichtner provides a compact history of the Habsburg Empire. She defines the Habsburg lineage, their political moves, the encompassing impact on Eastern Europe and the difficulties of a multinational state. Part two presents important reproduced primary documents including speeches, sections of multiple Eastern European countries' constitutions and Parliamentary rulings. This is helpful because it allows the reader to experience the language and intent of the document without having to decipher through different scholarly interpretations. This source is useful for our research because it details the important era of the Habsburg rule.
-M.O.


Justman,Zuzana. A Trial in Prague, DVD. New York: Cinema Guild, 1999.


A gripping and true story of anti-semitism crossed with Stalinist show trial. Much footage of the original televised trials, including the (mostly Jewish) convicts ASKING for the death penalty, which they promptly received. General Secretary Rudolf Slánský was clearly the biggest name executed. These were among the most influential communists in the formation of the post-WWII Czechoslovak government and their Jewish family background was clearly used against them during these phony trials. (PMP)


Kutak,Robert. The Story of a Bohemian-American Village. New York: Arno Press, 1970.


Brief Histories: Czechoslovakia is exactly that. It is a brief history of the existence of Czechoslovakia from 1918 to 1993. It is separated into periods defined by major events, such as World War II. It is similar to a text book in the fact that it offers what happened but the author does not interject their opinion or reaction. It is an overview of events and offers little on subjects such as daily life, women, or the arts. This book was written for English audiences and includes a list of further readings, which correlates to each chapter. These further readings are primary and secondary sources that can be found in English. All non-English sources have been omitted. This book is a great starting off point for anyone researching Czechoslovakia but would not be helpful for anyone studying the Czechs as a whole. The most valuable part of this book is its list of resources which could possibly lead to a wealth of knowledge. ~E.S.


Langhamer,Antonin. Legend of Bohemian Glass : A Thousand Years of Glassmaking in the Heart of Europe. Zlin: Tigris, 2003.


Being from a town with a rich glass making history I found The Legend of Bohemian Glass interesting. The author describes why glass is important to the Czech people and how it represented Bohemia to the rest of Europe. This book offers the history of glass making as well as techniques and common forms. This history encompasses everything from the beginning to the present. Amazing colored photographs are included of various examples of Czech works. Other interesting parts that are included in this book are a glossary of glass terms, a selected bibliography and the logos of all glassworks, finishing studios and school up to 1940. This could be a very interesting part of our exhibit and Czech glass is a beautiful blend of both form and function throughout the ages. ~E.S.


Ledbetter,Eleanor E.. The Czechs of Cleveland. Cleveland: Americanization Committee, Mayor's Advisory War Committee, 1919. (DM)


Masaryk,Tomas G.. The Meaning of Czech History. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1974.


Tomas Masaryk offers an interesting view of Czech history because of his training as a philosopher and his presidency of the Czech Republic. He was the first president of the new republic and was already very much an important political figure at that point. His goal is not to analyze Czech history but to illustrate to his people the importance of the past and the ethical base which they should represent. He wrote about history but then offers a commentary that is relevant to his audience. Masaryk wrote The Meaning of Czech History to the people of his day. It was intended as a contemporary moral guide in uncertain times. He wanted to inspire change. He was calling out to his people to stand up and become their own leaders. Though some bias maybe seen because of his important ties to the Czech government, he offers many sources and includes a biographical index in the back of the book. ~E.S.


Miller,Daniel E.. The Czech Republic. Richard C. Frucht. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO, 2005.


Daniel Miller, author of the Czech section, has a Ph. D. in history and is currently a history professor at the University of West Florida in Pensacola. He studies Czech and Slovak history, specifically agrarian political history in the timeframe between World War I and World War II. This book is a summary of Eastern Europe, separating that portion into northern, central and southeastern and including the Czech Republic. The individual components are organized by country various scholars write on their county of expertise. Miller outlines the Czech section by telling about the "Land and People," "History," "Political Developments," "Cultural Development," "Economic Development," and "Contemporary Challenges." The section also includes several maps, political issues, cultural issues, and tourist information. This book does not go in depth but simply provides a brief overview for the student or general reader.


A.B.Pernal, Marek. 2006. Czech & Slovak Republics. New York City: Dorling Kindersley Publishing.


This book is a travel guide for the Czech Republic. In the first chapter you can find out a brief history of where the country is in Europe, how large the country is, and about how many people live in the country. You can also find out about the heritage, how the country came to be and a little about the government of the country. As you go further into the book you can look at the country in sections. In these sections there is more history about them and many pictures of the area and what you may find in the area. Toward the back of the book you will find an English-Czech translation on some different words. There is also a section on what they call a survival guide. This section has practical information and travel information. This book would be a good source for researching on how the Czechs currently live in the Czech Republic.


Press, Petra. 2002. Czech Republic. San Diego: Lucent Books.


This book has a little of everything when it comes to the Czech Republic. The book starts out with a brief introduction about the Czech Republic. Then it goes into a chapter on the geography of the country. The next three chapters are about the history of the Czechs and what they had to go through to get to where they are today. The next chapter (chapter five) is about modern life in the Czech Republic. It talks about education, family life, cuisine, sports, holiday and many more things. The last chapter talks about the Czech culture, with regards to art and theater among other things. In the epilogue you learn about the things that the Czechs are still trying to over come. Lastly at the end of the book there is a list of facts about the Czech Republic. These facts can give you an idea of how life is for the Czechs but there is a chance that it may have changed because a lot of the facts are from 1999 and 2000. (JR)


J.R.Rosenberg, Tina. 1995. The Haunted Land: Facing Europe's Ghosts After Communism. New York: Vintage Books.


A well-written tour through Czechoslovakia, Poland, and Germany during the early years of their transition from communism. 418 pages, with a six page selected bibliography that is conveniently divided into "General", "Czechoslovakia", "Poland", and "Germany" sections. Here's a juicy quote from page 77: "Czechoslovakia was always an uneasy marriage. The agreement of federation in 1918- signed in, of all places, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania- united one of Europe's most cosmopolitan and developed lands with a pastoral province of Hungary that had never ruled itself. At that time, only about two hundred Slovaks had more than an elementary education. Czech emigrants built roads, libraries, and factories and taught Slovak children. The Slovaks resented them for it." There is also much detail here about the controversial "lustrace" laws, which sought to expose and expunge former communists and secret agents from social leadership in some of these new democracies. This makes a great companion piece to the Weigel book also that I also cited in this bibliography becuase the one emphasizes the religious perspective on what happened, especially the Catholic perspective, the other emphasizes the secular/ skeptical/ agnostic perspective. We can't really appreciate 1989 without both points of view. (PMP)


Rossi, Jeanne Koti. 2006. Cleveland State University Ph.D.Sayer, Derek. 1998. . Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press.


I think this source may be beneficial to our research because it offers further insight to Czech culture. Using pictures, literature, poetry, pronunciation keys, maps Sayer provides a unique survey of Czech heritage. He focus on the complexities of political, ethnic, and religious change that has plagued and influenced the region and how the Czech culture endured. Sources range from personal memoirs, encyclopedias, exhibition catalogues, anthologies, newspapers, magazines, essays, and official histories. These provide a good lead to primary documents that may be useful for our research efforts. -M.O.Sís, Peter. 2007. . New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.This book is a book about the story of one person that grew up in Czechoslovakia during the time of World War II and the Cold war. This man is telling his story to us though this book. The book contains parts of his diary and his feelings of what he was going through. You would find this book in the children’s section of the library because it is classified as a children’s book or a juvenile book. This book does have a lot of pictures but along these pictures are a lot of dates and descriptions of what the people were going through during this time. There are also some pages that have parts of the author’s diary that you could read.


J.R.Stone, Norman. 1999. . 2nd Ed Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishers.


This book provides readers with an introduction to the complex era from 1878 to the end of World War I. The 40 years before 1914 were a period of extraordinary peace and prosperity but this world came to a dramatic end with the start of the First World War. Stone explores the political history of the period running up to the war, setting events in the context of social, economic and cultural changes. Norman Stone makes sense of this complex period of political and social change by exploring common European themes and establishing a political and international chronology for readers to follow. He reveals the individual character of the European countries, discussing the five Great Powers in essay rather than narrative form. ~C.L.Wilson, Neil, and Richard Nebesky. 2001. . 3 ed. Footscray: Lonely Planet Publications Pty Ltd.This book was made to be a tourist book. However I think that it has a lot of useful information in it that we could use. The book starts out with a general history of Czechoslovakia. After the history portion there are some facts about the country for a visitor, activities that you could do in the country and ways of getting there and getting around in the country. I found these sections really interesting because it is as though you get a better understanding about how these people live and what it would be like to visit the country. The next part of the book it broken down into different areas of Czechoslovakia and each section tells you a little about the area for example you can go to the section on Prague and read about the history of Prague and what it is like if you were to visit Prague. The last sections of it book have a glossary and a list of some translations from the Czech language to English. The book would be a good book to learn about the culture and how they have to do things now. I think that this book gives us an idea of how the Czech people live as to regards to everyday activities.


Vlchek,Frank J.. The Story of My Life. 1st ed. Winston Chrislock. Kent and London: The Kent State University Press, 2004 (originally published in Bohemia in 1928).


For some odd reason this priceless primary resource was, apprently, never translated into English until 2004! This is basically a 381 page, very detailed first person account of a Czech-American Horatio Alger story. Rags to riches, indeed, or rather, herding geese in Bohemia to riches in a Cleveland, Ohio near it's industrial peak. The annecdotes and sheer verite' alone make this a worthy read. It is aptly summarized in the Czech chapter of our Grabowski and Grabowski book about conflict and cooperation. (PMP)


Weigel,George. The Final Revolution: The Resistance Church and the Collapse of Communism. New York: Oxford University Press, 1992.


It's easy for decadent suburbanites like us to forget how miraculous was the (mostly) peaceful death of communism in central Europe in 1989. This was also the year I graduated from high school, so it was an emotional time for me but I can't say that I really appreciated what happened until I read this excellent and well writen book back around 1997 or so. This makes a great companion piece to the Rosenberg book also that I also cited in this bibliography becuase the one emphasizes the religious perspective on what happened, especially the Catholic perspective, the other emphasizes the secular/ skeptical/ agnostic perspective. We can't really appreciate 1989 without both points of view. (PMP)


J.R.Wolchik, Sharon L. and Alfred G. Meyer, eds. 1985. . Durham: Duke University Press.


Contributions by American, Canadian, and East European scholars provide a comprehensive look at the status of women in Eastern Europe, with particular emphasis on the post-war situation. The book covers the relationship of Marxism and feminism and some of the factors that have conditioned efforts by the elites to change the status of women since the beginning of Communist rule; the political role of women; the status and activities of women in the prewar period; women in the workplace; and women in the family. A concluding section also examines views of women found in literature and folklore.


Royce, Morton, et.al. C.L.Workers of the Writers' Program of the Work Projects Administration. St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press, 1986.


In a letter sent by Morton Royce to the heads of the Writers to Work Program states that, “The building up of our country knows no parallel in historical times—in the influx of peoples from all ends of the earth, and in the freedom and opportunity which beckoned to the impoverished and oppressed of all lands. How a social and cultural unity was achieved by these people, without stamping cultural differences into a mold, producing the unique American civilization, and how this fabric of American democracy was progressively enlarged, is this fabric of American democracy was progressively enlarged, is the crux of our story” (Administration 1986, xi). The introduction asserts that we are able to know more about the “Bohemian Flats” than we are able to know of those who actually wrote this book. In turn, this book would serve as a great reference tool for those interested in how a cultural survey can be composed by a group of writers who are not entirely schooled on performing a historical analysis, but who were able to do so under the leadership of certifiable authorities. Putting the changing social opinion on immigrants in post WWI America, the introduction places this text into its historical context of being a tool used to carry on the memory of the “Bohemian Flats”, as well as, serving as a tool for future scholars seeking to identify the ethnic enclave importance and relevance in contemporary times. Throughout the changing times, there has been an erosion of the documented ethnic identity, and this volume composed in the 1930’s would serve as a great means for those seeking to learn the format by which to create such a work. Comparing this ethnic enclave to that situated in Cleveland, this is a very similar situation, which serves as a perfect method of organization and description. It handles the function of memory, and places emphasis on the importance of documentation in preserving old world representations in America. It is very interesting to see that over seventy years ago that there were already groups noting the need for addressing the decaying remnants of our immigrant history. Now over seventy years later, we are still seeing the need, but are even at a greater disadvantage for grabbing aspects like oral accounts. Discussing the change of property from residential to industry, during a time of industrial prosperity, it is beneficial for those seeking to comprehend the shift in identity from immigrant to American, and also the view of this change. The authors compose a written picture of the feeling of the flats, and implement oral accounts to present their interpretation within the bonds of first-hand storytellers. Overall, this volume is put together very well, and uses sources in such a way that presents this tale cohesively and fluently. It may or may not be entirely historically accurate, but it is so descriptive that it gives a visual memory to someone who never experienced the “Bohemian flats” first hand… serving its intended purpose. (JRWOBIG)