Pavel Tigrid Collection of the Czechoslovak Documentation Centre
Pavel Tigrid (1917-2003), also known by the name Pavel Schönfeld, was a Czech writer, journalist and politician, one of the most prominent representatives of Czechoslovakian anti-Communist exile. After the Velvet Revolution, he was an advisor to President Vaclav Havel and Minister of Culture of the Czech Republic.
Na Zátorách 6, 170 00 Praha 7 - Holešovice, Czech Republic
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Provenance and cultural activities
Pavel Tigrid was an important Czech journalist, publicist and politician, the most prominent figure of Czechoslovak anti-Communist exile. After the Communist coup in 1948, he left for Germany and gradually built up a Munich branch of the Czechoslovak Radio Free Europe, while Ferdinand Peroutka formed the New York headquarters. Tigrid resigned in November 1952 after conceptual disagreements with Peroutka and moved to the USA, where he founded the Testimony in 1956, an exile quarterly for politics and culture, which became the most significant and prestigious magazine of Czech political exile. In 1960, Tigrid and Testimonies moved to Paris, where he was closer to home, and could be in close contact with domestic co-workers. Today Pavel Tigrid is considered one of the most important Czech journalists of the 20th century.
Pavel Tigrid returned from exile to Czechoslovakia after the Velvet Revolution at the invitation of President Vaclav Havel and then worked as his advisor. From 19 January 1994 to 4 July 1996, Pavel Tigrid worked as Minister of Culture of the Czech Republic. In his work, he renewed the tradition of awarding the State Prize for Literature and translation work. Even after his unsuccessful candidacy to the Senate, he continued his service for the modern Czech state as a consultant for Czech-German relations within the framework of the Czech-German Future Fund, founded in late 1997. During the 1990s, he published articles, reflections and comments, now from Prague, broadcasting Radio Free Europe.
The collection of Pavel Tigrid originated from his own activities in the years 1994-2000, in the period when Pavel Tigrid held the post of Minister of Culture of the Czech Republic and then worked in the presidential office of Václav Havel. Pavel Tigrid donated his collection to the Czechoslovak Documentation Center (ČSDS), in 2000, when he pulled out of public life and returned to Héricy near Paris. In 2003, ČSDS concluded a gift agreement with the National Museum in Prague. CSDS collections, including the Tigrid Pavel collection, were handed over to the National Museum. The collection was institutionalized and partly made available to the scientific public.
The National Museum is also involved in popularizing Tigrid's life and works. Tigrid's life fate was presented as an exhibition called “Pavel Tigrid: The Voice of Freedom”, organized in 2018 at the National Monument in Vítkov, where also took place the “Tigrid Testimony of the Twentieth Century”, which presented Pavel Tigrid in the context of the political and cultural history of the last century, in which Tigrid was an active creator. In 2018, the National Museum published “Pavel Tigrid, a witness of the twentieth century”.
Description of content
The Tigrid Pavel Collection mainly contains written documents from the years 1994 to 1998, when Pavel Tigrid held the post of Minister of Culture of the Czech Republic and then worked in Vaclav Havel's presidential office as adviser for Czech-German relations. In the fund there are several documents related to the post-communist period when he was Minister of Culture. There are also conference programs and texts from several conference papers by various authors. The collection also contains Pavel Tigrid's correspondence. In addition, invitations are invested in the fund for the ceremonial transfer of cultural prizes, receptions, official and friendly gatherings. The fund includes newspaper clippings and copies of articles, especially about and by Paul Tigrid, as well as articles on cultural events.
- grey literature (regular archival documents such as brochures, bulletins, leaflets, reports, intelligence files, records, working papers, meeting minutes): 10-99
- manuscripts (ego-documents, diaries, notes, letters, drafts, etc.): 10-99
- publications (books, newspapers, articles, press clippings): 100-499
Geographical scope of recent operation
Date of founding
Place of founding
Praha, Prague, Czech Republic
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Creator(s) of content
Important events in the history of the collection
- all closed to the public
Author(s) of this page
- Hanáková, Jitka
Prečan, Vilém , interview by Hanáková, Jitka, September 28, 2017. COURAGE Registry Oral History Collection