Mgr. Pavel Fiala

* 1964  

  • “Before the general strike – I was not the only one from Havlíček Youth employed by the company – they called on me to go see the management and it was like…at first I was anxious with apprehension about what’s going on again. I expected serious trouble, but they said that’s not the case. With the words: ‘What are you going to have Mr. Fiala?’ the secretary made me a coffee. The bosses came next: Please tell us what to do Mr. Fiala, you’re from that group Havlíček Youth, you have these connections.’ I didn’t know what to tell them, so I said: ‘As far as the strike goes, don’t interfere. Don’t do anything at all. Just let it happen.”

  • “Everything was happening so quickly, that I am no longer able to put things into context. The meetings took place every day, every evening, and there was constant flow of information. We housed students from Prague who came to visit us. Someone from Havlíček Youth drove around the region with the students and confirmed what the students were saying. That’s how we tried to visit people and tell them what’s going on based on the information we received.”

  • “We (Havlíček Youth) were well known at this point, at least here in Havlíčkův Brod. The press published articles titled ‘What do they want?’ and the like. We were the ones subverting the republic. How were we supposed to do that while were doing the work drives? According to them, even a work drive was a subversive activity.”

  • Full recordings
  • 4

    Havlíčkův Brod, 21.08.2019

    (audio)
    duration: 01:12:15
    media recorded in project Stories of the 20th Century TV
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

We were the ones who subvert the republic

Pavel Fiala in 2019
Pavel Fiala in 2019
photo: Během natáčení

Pavel Fiala was born in Havlíčkův Brod on May 19, 1964. In 1987 he became active in Havlíček Youth (Havlíčkova mládež), an informal local movement. Havlíček Youth was initiated to provoke the regime with cultural events and clever happenings. Pavel Fiala partook in a comical exhibition in a local park that was broken up by Public Security officers (VB). He participated in work drives by which the movement wanted to defend itself from smears in the communist press. In September 1988 he contributed to the Folková Lipnice music festival, the same festival where Václav Havel spoke publically after many years. Havel greeted the festival goers. In July 1989 he was part of a protest march to Havlíčkova Borová. In November 1989 he co-founded the Havlíčkův Brod chapter of the Civic Forum and was active during the revolution. Pavel Fiala is a visual artist (a painter) as well as an art teacher. In 2019 he lived in Svitavy.