Event Type: Conferences
Start Date : April 21, 9:30 am
End Date : April 22, 5:00 pm


Event Organizer

Event Sponsor

Event Co-Sponsor(s)

The World of Jaroslav Hašek
an international conference at the Harriman Institute of Columbia University
on the 100th anniversary of the author’s death and of the first publication
of Parts Two and Three of The Good Soldier Švejk

A link to the event program document can be found here: The World of Jaroslav Hašek – 2023 conference program.

This conference will draw together leading scholars from various disciplines to reflect on
the life, work, and ongoing relevance of the great Czech author, Jaroslav Hašek (1883-1923).
Best known for the unfinished long comic narrative, The Adventures of the Good Soldier Švejk in
the Great War (Osudy dobrého vojáka Švejka za světové války, 1921-1923), Hašek was many
things at many moments: dilettante, humorist, satirist, journalist, hoaxer, bohemian, anarchist
politician, Bolshevik commandant, and turncoat. His legacy remains unclear. While a household
name in the Czech Republic, a key influence on later international fiction (especially on war
novels such as Catch 22), and a crucial voice for articulating the role of stupidity in the modern
world, for most scholars Hašek appears as a marginal figure on the world stage. He does not fit
into familiar currents. Taking place on the 100 th  anniversary of the publication of the final part
of Švejk, as well as of the author’s death, the conference will venture new answers to persistent
questions about Hašek’s legacy: How has Hašek been received differently across the world?
What was his relation to global modernism? What does Hašek have to offer to literary theory or
philosophy? To what extent does the world we live in today resemble the one to which Hašek
gave such a devastating representation?

The World of Jaroslav Hašek
an international conference at the Harriman Institute of Columbia University on the 100th
provisional program, revised version

Day 1: Friday, April 21, 2023
Session 1: Narrative Structure of Švejk
Bohumil Fořt, Institute for Czech Literature, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic
Strategy and Effect: Narrative and Semantic Techniques in Hašek’s The Good Soldier Švejk
Peter Steiner, University of Pennsylvania
Josef Švejk: The Man of Many Turns
Daniel Pratt, McGill University
Against History: Hašek and the Problem of Historiography
Session 2: Biographical and local context
Jomar Hønsi
Researching Jaroslav Hašek and His Writings in Archives and Libraries
Richard Změlík, Univerzita Palackého
Prague Topography in The Good Soldier Švejk from the Point of View of Literary Cartography
Coffee break
Session 3: Hašek, Švejk and Animals
Jindřich Toman, University of Michigan
Photomontage as Visual Mystification: Jaroslav Hašek and The World of Animals
Václav Paris, The City University of New York
Hašek’s Hybrids
Keynote speech and discussion
Jean-Michel Rabaté, University of Pennsylvania
The “Stupid Joke” from Anthropology to Satire: Kant, Freud, Hašek, Badiou

Day 2: Saturday, April 22, 2023
Session 4: Hašek, Švejk as Seen by Authors of Prose Fiction
Sergey Soloukh
Nothing Will Happen to Anyone: The Romance/Novel of Jaroslav Hašek and Jarmila Mayerová
Anna Förster, Universität Erfurt
Beyond Philology: Literary Contributions to Hašek Studies
Session 5: Versions of Švejk to the East
Mark Lipovetsky, Columbia University
Švejk Among Soviet Tricksters
Charles Sabatos, Yeditepe University
The Destinies of Aslan Asker Şvayk in Turkish Translation
Coffee break
Session 6: Unexpected Parallels
Erica Weitzman, Northwestern University
František A. Podhajský
Realism in a Modernist Key: Švejk and Company

 The Heyman Center for the Humanities, Room B-101
74 Morningside Drive
New York, NY, 10027
  (212) 854-4541
  (212) 854-3099