Podcast: the Resilient Republic according to Masaryk

Performers: Milan Hanyš, Lucie Merhautová

Intelligence is threatened by the idea of its own importance. It turns pale and crawls into the trenches of the campaigns of subversion. This is Masaryk's analysis of modern society. Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk was an outsider, says historian of ideas Milan Hanyš of the Masaryk Institute and the Archives of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic. From the outside, he observed how easily the educated succumb to conformism, groupthink.

Masaryk used fiction to diagnose society, recalls literary historian Lucie Merhautová. TGM polemicises with his fictional heroes as living people. He wants to understand their characters. Literature offers him a unique insight into the human interior.

"A vain weakling who apes others" - this is Masaryk's anti-hero. Beware of the hysterical elites in a fit of moral panic who are driving us into the trenches! Let us beware of big slogans, Masaryk urges: let us be specific.

Sylva sylvarum podcast series as part of the AV21 Strategy's Resilient Society for the 21st Century research programme.

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