End of the World

Poetry and Prose

Ivan M. Jirous

End of the World

Ivan M. Jirous

Distributed for Karolinum Press, Charles University

400 pages | 35 halftones | 6 x 8
Paper $25.00 ISBN: 9788024645278 Will Publish November 2020 Not for sale in the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic
Sometimes called the Czech Bukowski, and more widely known by the epithet “Magor” (which translates roughly to “fool” or “madman”), Ivan Jirous was one of the most significant figures in the Czechoslovak cultural underground of the 1960s through the '80s.  Although trained as an art historian and famed for his poetry, Jirous was convinced that it was actually rock and roll music that held the greatest potential to enact change under the repressive regime of communist Czechoslovakia. He designated himself as the artistic director of the dissident rock band The Plastic People of the Universe, legendary for psychedelic music that was heavily influenced by nonconformist Western acts like Frank Zappa and The Velvet Underground. Alongside other figures from the musical underground, Jirous was arrested in 1976—the second of five prison sentences he would serve for his dissent—which helped bring about the landmark civil rights initiative known as Charter 77. In the wake of 1989’s Velvet Revolution, Váсlav Havel—the first president of the Czech Republic—was to say that Jirous and his unwavering commitment to liberation played “no small part” in casting off the yoke of Soviet oppression.

End of the World is the first major collection in English of the works of this legendary Czech “madman.” Although nicknamed for his aggressive and rebellious behavior, Jirous’s writing reveal a refined, sophisticated, and even tender sensibility. Translated in part by Paul Wilson, an original member of the Plastic People, the book gathers his poems and letters from prison, as well as his book-length prose work, The True Story of the Plastic People, alongside critical essays on Jirous’s life and work. End of the World is an ideal introduction to the raucous writer who playwright Tom Stoppard referred to as one of the most interesting personalities in modern Czech history.
 
Contents
1. Introduction2. Letters from Prison3. Magor as a Cultural Icon4. The True Story of the Plastic People 5. Magor as a Poet6. Magor’s Swan Songs, selection7. Additional Poems8. Magor the Critic9. Photography
For more information, or to order this book, please visit https://press.uchicago.edu
Google preview here

Chicago Manual of Style

RSS Feed

RSS feed of the latest books from Karolinum Press, Charles University. RSS Feed