Writing Chapter One: Ein Altes Blatt

The narrative of Ein Altes Blatt centers on a group of armed nomads’ invasion of the capital and their occupation of the square before the Emperor’s palace. The narrator, a modest shoemaker, whose business among others lines the square, provides a brief report on the conflict between nomads and townsfolk. Beneath the seemingly innocent and…
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Prague’s Spatial Politics during the fin-de-siècle

The question driving me lately has been how were Prague’s spatial politics instituted in daily urban life. Early attempts to re-code Prague, such as the Hanka’s Manuscripts and his funeral, asserted that Czechs had an originary belonging to the city’s spaces. As a result, pre-existing public monuments erected under Habsburg rule became re-understood as foreign or…
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July Update in August: Vaclav Hanka’s Funeral

The Slavic reading of Prague in literature, newspapers, and national funerals prefaced such a reading in monuments and other representational forms. The 1861 funeral procession of Vaclav Hanka, who by this time emerged as a ‘father’ of the national revival, was the point of departure for the gradual domination of Prague urban space by Czech…
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June Update: Kafka and Nationalist Monuments in Prague

Although Kafka may have been reticent to openly identify Prague in his stories, his diaries and letters to friends and family contain references to his life in the Bohemian capital. I have finally come across an instance in which he provides his personal sentiments towards two of the city’s notable monuments conceived and installed by Czech nationalists,…
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May Update: The Thesis Begins to Take Shape

Having divided the material into seven categories (Austro-Hungarian Empire, Prague Architecture and Urbanism, Prague Social History, Urban Theory, Kafka Interpretations, Kafka’s Biography, and Primary Texts), I am beginning to conceptualize how they interact with each other. I have considered how the social and cultural relations within the multinational empire led to the rise of nationalism,…
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