Castle and Cathedral in Modern Prague
Longing for the Sacred in a Skeptical Age
CEU Press 2017
New Books in ArchitectureNew Books in Arts & LettersNew Books in Eastern European StudiesNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Intellectual HistoryNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in ReligionNew Books Network November 9, 2017 Marshall Poe
As Bruce R. Berglund, points out in his terrific book Castle and Cathedral in Modern Prague: Longing for the Sacred in a Skeptical Age (CEU Press, 2017), the Czech Republic is an odd place, religion-wise. It’s among the most secular in the world, yet Czechs have a long tradition of believing in “Something.” They even have a thing called “Somethingism.” Just what that Something is and what that Something means for Czechs to do, of course, is and long has been the subject of debate. Bruce takes us into the heart of that debate in the interwar period, a time of great intellectual ferment and creativity in what was then Czechoslovakia. It turns out Czech intellectuals (Masaryk being the foremost of them) wanted the Czechs the be guided by Something in all their affairs. Bruce does a great job of telling us why and how.