Alexander Dubcek was a Czechoslovak statesman and a central figure of political change in former Czechoslovakia. In 1968, he took over the position of a State Secretary and started his political programme called ‘’Czechoslovakia’s Road to Socialism.’’ This program envisaged economic reforms and the wide-ranging democratisation of Czechoslovak political life. During his political activity in 1968, the Czechoslovak press was granted greater freedom of expression, and victims of political purges during the Stalin era were rehabilitated.
On the 27th of November, we are celebrating Dubcek’s 100th birthday anniversary. On this occasion, we are organizing an exhibition of Dubcek’s photographs, taken by a journalist, photographer, and later a good friend of Dubcek, Vladimir Benko.
Benko worked for a news agency, so he was mainly covering the political journeys of Dubcek for newspapers. Later, when they became good friends, Benko wanted to capture more moments from Dubcek’s life, this time more personal ones.
After the tragic death of Dubcek in November 1992, Benko decided to collect some of his pictures and show them to the public for a simple reason – to point out Dubcek’s human approach in his political actions.
At Bohemia House, we decided to organise this exhibition for the same reason; to remember him as a human face of politics and his legacy.
The set of photographs was kindly donated by the Embassy of Slovakia in London.