Josef Platz

* 1937  †︎ 2024

  • “It was quite certain that when they gave me an application to join the communist party, I told them to shove it up somewhere. I did not say that to them, I just told them I would not sign it, but I thought so, and of course, when they cut me off from work and my wife was out too, as she did not have the opportunity to make any money. We had two kids, so I thought, so if I was going to stay half a year and if I did not get any work, we'll pack it up. Eda wanted to leave a long time ago, if it had been up to her, she would be gone in 1968 already.”

  • “When the famous Prague Uprising broke out on May 5th, so my dad was at work, so he was somewhere in the barricades, and we were home and waited for what was going on, which was quite a lot, because at night the Germans they defending themselves by taking regular citizen out of the houses, their flats and guiding them in front of the tanks as shields - today called the live shields - and chasing the people to clear the barricades to let the tanks pass, so it was that... it was terribly anxious and we were all afraid. So I was afraid too, even though I did not know at that time I was like, seven or eight years, and I could not imagine what was going on.”

  • „They were Russians, but we did not welcome them anymore, I was afraid of them, because they kept firing at something, when you went home, so they were standing there asking:´Where are you going?´with their guns pointing at you. It was very uncomfortable. Meanwhile, I got married and we had a baby, a daughter of one year, so I was going out with the baby pram, because my wife was away now, so I walked among the tanks. It was not a pleasant feeling. No way could you say that it was a pleasant feeling, it was rather terrible. It was horrible, and for us who experienced the year 1945, so it was a pretty unpleasant reversal and especially how they did it and how they behaved and how it all looked, it was quite awful.”

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Praha, Dejvice, 06.11.2017

    duration: 01:24:07
    media recorded in project The Stories of Our Neigbours
  • 2

    byt pamětníka - Dejvice, 09.02.2018

    duration: 54:34
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

I regret not fighting with a gun in my hand

 Platz Josef
Platz Josef
photo: archiv pamětníka

Josef Platz was born in Prague in 1937, where he experienced WW2. As a child he could not estimate danger appropriately, but felt scared, when they had to hide from air-raids or when the Germans were taking the neighbours from the surrounding houses to use them as live shields from the tanks. Josef Platz studied the Czech Technical University (ČVUT) and following 1967 also FAMU, as he enjoyed the animated production and documentary movies. Josef Platz always inclined to art; since his youth he played theatre, mainly pantomime. He founded the group Pantokaberet and later cooperated with the mime Boris Hybner. In 1962 he married a reporter,  Eda Kriseová, who was banned any activity at the beginning of normalisation, and Josef had to feed the family himself. First he worked in Supraphon and later as an external co-operator in the Czech TV, where he c-created the program for children called Studio Kamarád and a puppet show, Jú a Hele. Following the velvet revolution he became the head of a certain documentary creative group in the Czech TV. Josef Platz passed away on February 1st, 2024.