M. Havel

Scientist, co-founder of Občanské fórum (Civic Forum) 

In the spring of 1969, Ivan M. Havel left Czechoslovakia for doctoral studies at the prestigious University of Berkley. Nobody believed he would ever come back.

The younger brother of former President Vaclav Havel, Ivan M. Havel was born on 11th October 1938 and dedicated his life to academics. He graduated in automation and computers from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering at Czech Technical University, followed by a doctorate from Berkeley. He achieved habilitation in the field of artificial intelligence at the 3rd Medical Faculty of Charles University, and for several years worked at the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences. Although he didn't sign Charter 77, he organized private seminars in his apartment and supported the publication of samizdat. He was one of the founders of the Civic Forum, and has been an editor of the magazine Universe since 1990. Today he works as an associate professor at Charles University in the Centre for Theoretical Studies.

I remain
The testimonies of people who were there.

The Faithful I Remain website captures authentic and unique testimonies from witnesses of Palach’s sacrifice and presents fascinating stories from people who were inescapably affected by political trials, Soviet occupation and the subsequent “normalization”.

We invited publicly known figures to share their recollections of an historic and challenging time, resulting in a series of interviews full of intimate memories, experiences and impressions that illustrate critical turning points in the period of Communist rule.

The website was created by 2FRESH for HBO Europe s. r. o. to support the Burning Bush, a three-part drama from world-renowned Polish director Agnieszka Holland.The project was completed with assistance from the Prague City Council and Mayor of Prague MUDr. Bohuslav Svoboda.


HBO Europe's three-part drama Burning Bush, directed by world-renowned Polish filmmaker Agnieszka Holland, premiered on the HBO film channel on 27th January 2013.

Both the most extensive and ambitious project in the history of HBO Europe, the film recalls a period of Czech modern history which had been ignored in Czech cinema until now.

The film begins with the reconstruction of the shocking act of Jan Palach, who set himself on fire on 16 January 1969 in protest against the Soviet occupation

The story follows the young lawyer who represents Jan Palach’s mother against an influential Communist official and serves to describe the transformation of the Czechoslovak society at the time – from the silent protest culminating at Palach’s burial to growing resignation and the upcoming period of “normalization.”

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