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    Seeking Freedom Is a Learning Process

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    Our next report introduces Czech writer Petr Placák, an active dissident who started in the late twentieth century. He was an important part of "samizdat" – a key form of dissident activity prevalent in the Soviet bloc at that time. Individuals like Placák would reproduce censored publications by hand and pass them around from reader to reader. Let’s find out more.

    He has a degree in history, which he got only after the revolution of course.

    In communist times he was only allowed to undertake a mechanical apprenticeship.

    In literature he found a way to pass on principles of humanity and criticize injustice.

    He belonged to the crowd of the youngest generation of Czech dissidents.

    We are talking about Czech writer Petr Placák, alias Petr Zmrzlík.

    [Jáchym Topol, Writer and Journalist]:
    "Before 1989 Petr belonged to the active ones, to the activists, to those who fought. I think, that what he was doing or what we were doing, was built on Charter 77."

    Placák issued two samizdat books.

    As one of the closely watched dissidents, he was forced to write books under the pseudonym Petr Zmrzlík.

    He became an inconvenience for the regime not only as a writer, but as an instigator of many activities against the totalitarian regime as well.

    In 1988 he founded an organization "České děti" which issued leaflets and articles directed against the totalitarian regime.

    [Jáchym Topol, Writer and Journalist]:
    “I was one of the first members of the organization 'České děti.' And I can say that the thoughts and ideas coming from Petr’s head fell on fertile ground.”

    As an editor-in-chief of the magazine “Babylon," Petr Placák is now guiding today’s young authors to learn the real values in society.

    NTD News, Prague, Czech Republic.