Reading Václav Havel by David S. DanaherReading Václav Havel by David S. Danaher

Reading Václav Havel

byDavid S. Danaher

Hardcover | April 14, 2015

Pricing and Purchase Info

$70.00 online 
$72.00 list price
Earn 350 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


Ships within 1-3 weeks

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


As a playwright, a dissident, and a politician, Václav Havel was one of the most important intellectual figures of the late twentieth century. Working in an extraordinary range of genres - poetry, plays, public letters, philosophical essays, and political speeches - he left behind a range of texts so diverse that scholars have had difficulty grappling with his oeuvre as a whole.

In Reading Václav Havel, David S. Danaher approaches Havel's remarkable body of work holistically, focusing on the language, images, and ideas which appear and reappear in the many genres in which Havel wrote. Carefully reading the original Czech texts alongside their English versions, he exposes what in Havel's thought has been lost in translation. A passionate argument for Havel's continuing relevance, Reading Václav Havel is the first book to capture the fundamental unity of his vast literary legacy.

David S. Danaher is a professor in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literature at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Title:Reading Václav HavelFormat:HardcoverDimensions:280 pages, 9.27 × 6.34 × 0.94 inPublished:April 14, 2015Publisher:University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing DivisionLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1442649925

ISBN - 13:9781442649927

Look for similar items by category:


Table of Contents

Introduction: Approaches to Reading Havel

1. The "Restlessness of Transcendence": Havel's Genres

2. Explaining and Understanding: The "Weirdness" of Havel's Plays

3. Understanding East and West: The World in Existential Crisis

4. "Metaphysical Reconstruction": Translating Havel's Key Words

Conclusion: Havel's Legacy as Appeal

Editorial Reviews

"This is among the best books written on Havel in the English language. Perhaps the richest and fullest account of Havel made by any scholar, Reading Václav Havel brings to light the extraordinary literary power of the former Czech president."

- James Pontuso, Department of Government and Foreign Affairs, Hampden-Sydney College