Frances Jackson M.A.

Contact

Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies
Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
Maria-Theresia-Straße 21
D-81675 München
Tel. +49 (0)89 / 2180-1375
Email

Project

"Zůstali věrni?" Narrativierung(en) der nationalen Gefährdung ["Zůstali věrni?" Narrating Munich and Beyond]

Project Description

The Munich Agreement, which spelled the end for the First Czechoslovak Republic and ultimately led to the founding of the widely despised Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia, was keenly felt by the Czech people.  To this day, it remains a painful and defining chapter of Czech historiography – not least because the Agreement can be seen as marking the moment that the nation's relative inconsequentiality in the eyes of the democratic West became all too obvious. Indeed, it is not for nothing that the events of that fateful night in September 1938 are sometimes referred to as the Munich Betrayal. From František Halas’ Torzo Naděje to Josef Hora’s Domov or Jaroslav Seifert’s Zhasněte světla, the spectre of national crisis looms large in a great many works of Czech literature published during the late 1930s and early 1940s, forming part of a larger cultural resistance to the political threats of the day. For the most part, though, they have received comparatively little scholarly attention, especially when held up against other collections by the authors in question.

On the basis of a broad understanding of narrative that does not automatically exclude lyric poetry, my PhD project examines the works of a number of Czech poets, published between 1938 and 1941 against the backdrop of the so-called narodní ohrožení. Taking into account aspects such as the use of allegory, eventfulness (in both the narratalogical and philosophical sense of the “event”) and sensory appeals, I seek to demonstrate the strategies employed by the poets to recount contemporary events and enshrine them within a much larger narrative, in which the Czech nation continues to survive despite recurrent outside threats. Emphasis is also placed on the poetic construction of loyalty.  However, I note that this is not generally directed towards to the disbanded First Republic, but rather to a more mythological understanding of Czech national identity.

The project title refers in part to the manifesto Věrni zůstaneme (Engl.: We shall remain faithful), which was published in May 1938 with the signatures of many leading literary figures.

Curriculum Vitae

Frances Jackson was born in Stockport, Great Britain.  She studied German, Czech and East European Studies in Oxford, Brno and Munich. She obtained a Master's degree in 2014, writing her thesis on women in Jiří Wolker's non-poetic works. In November 2014, she began her doctoral studies at the Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies under the supervision of Prof. Raoul Eshelman.

Publication

Translation (Literature)

"The Collector of Lists", Extract of Lena Gorelik's novel "Die Listensammlerin". In: The Missing Slate, 25 Nov. 2016, http://themissingslate.com/2016/11/25/the-collector-of-lists/view-all/

Conference Papers

11/2016 "Der Schatten der nationalen Gefährdung in der Lyrik von Jaroslav Kolman Cassius", Lecture at the international workshop "Česká literatura a kultura v protektorátu", Ostrava, CZ
04/2016 Chapter presentation at the BASEES conference, University of Cambridge, U.K.
05/2015 Project presentation at the SPIM meeting, University of Passau
Frances Jackson M.A.