The Czech Literature Portal “is intended mainly for the promotion of Czech literature abroad.” You can read more about it at a Prague Post story by Stephan Delbos:

Started by the Culture Ministry in 2005, the site was recently handed over to the Arts and Theatre Institute (Institut umění-Divadelní ústav) and two young institute experts, Viktor Debnár and Jaroslav Balvín, who were responsible for translating and launching an English-language version of the site in recent weeks…
The portal reads as a virtual survey of Czech literature, with an illustrated database of literary links and bibliographies. Perhaps more importantly, however, the site offers English-language readers an introduction to many contemporary Czech writers, whose work might otherwise be lost in translation. A lack of this type of cultural and linguistic cross-pollination is one of the largest shortcomings of the relatively diverse literary scene in Prague, where translators of Czech literature into English are still relatively rare, Balvín said.

Thanks for the link, peacay!


  1. Hat, I “know” you vaguely passingly, having bought your copy of Svejk some four years ago, but have patiently and ploddingly been translating my way through a half-dozen books of the author Ladislav Fuks for no real reason other than that I had to, with zero regard for legal rights or what I intended on doing with them once I finished. (as though a translation were ever actually “finished.”
    I should probably get in touch with these Czechs, if nothing else?
    I love your site.

  2. “[T]ranslators of Czech literature into English are still relatively rare”.
    As Andrew was presumably too high-minded to ask or enquire, is this a euphemism for “unusally well-paid”?

  3. Perhaps it’s a euphemism for “paid-at-all translators”.

  4. If “high-minded” is a synonym for “naively ignorant,” then this is probably more true than I would like.
    I’ve done a small amount of work out of Slovak (my brother lives and works in Bratislava) and gotten paid before, so it’s possible.

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