School of Humanities

CEEPUS WWIH webinar, June 6, 16.00 CET

South Slavic Women Writers in Prague and Czech culture (Zofka Kveder and Julka Chlapec Djordjević)

In the lecture held by Assoc. Professor Alenka Jensterle Doležal (Charles University Prague) we will focus on two South Slavic women writers living and writing in the beginning of the 20th period in Prague: the Slovenian-Croatian writer Zofka Kveder (1878–1926, living there from 1900 to 1906), and Serbian author, feminist and ex- “monarchical” author Julka Chlapec Djrordjević (1882-1969, living there from 1922 to 1945). Julka Chlapec Djordjević also inherited the legacy of Zofka Kveder as a writer and a feminist.

The lecture underlines the phenomena of two women writers whose literary and feminist careers took a new turn in one way or another because of their encounters with the city of Prague and Czech culture. They belonged to the Central European literary societies of their time – the first one of the monarchical period before the First World War and the second one to the period of the Czechoslovak First Republic. They were also mediators between different cultures and transmitters of cultural exchange mainly between Czech culture and their national culture. They were bilingual and multilingual and their impact was also transnational. They found their place in Prague also because of the connection to the Czech women writers and the feminist movement.

First we will contextualize the period of Fin-de-siècle and the beginning of 20th Century in Prague. We will shortly discuss the two women´s biographies and their connections with Czech women writers and feminists regarding also their reception in Czech culture. We will try to answer the question of the impact of the Czech vivid cultural life on their literary work and ideas: how did they embrace Czech culture in their writing? In the conclusion we will discuss the complicated question of their national and language identity.

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