Katolická teologická fakulta 1939-1990
history – 20th century
paperback, 524 pp., 1. edition
published: january 2008
recommended price: 440 czk
The book presents the first comprehensive study of the history of today's Catholic Theological Faculty, excluded from Charles University in 1950-1990 as a result of state intervention. As the subhead "Prolegomenon to the History of Czech Catholic Theology in the Second Half of the 20th Century" suggests, it aspires to more - it strives to contribute to the reflection of the historical development exceeding the scope of this institution. The author pays attention not only to the theological faculty's closing down during World War II and to its reopening in May 1945, but also to the substitutive Archdiocesan Theological School (1940-1945). He particularly emphasizes the actions of state authorities against the catholic theological studies. First, he dwells on the state of studies in the post-war period, taking into perspective also other faculties and diocesan and monastic training institutions. The same extended view is then applied to the events of 1948-1950, during which the course of these institutions was first interfered with, and especially to the year 1950, in which all of the catholic theological studies were reduced and restructured into the Roman Catholic Cyril and Methodius Theological Faculty in Prague. The following chapters trace its history throughout the communist period. The periodization is strictly based on events that the faculty underwent rather than on a priori designs. The author also includes the Olomouc branch of the faculty (1968-1974), which could not be omitted from the book despite its considerable autonomy. The history of the faculty is followed up to its reincorporation into Charles University in 1990. Despite the remarkable number of accompanying texts (profiles of the study subject and of tens of the faculty's professors), appendices and supplements (interesting authentic memoirs of two faculty's personalities - Jan Merell and Gustav Čejka), the author demonstrates that his work was lead not only by historical, but also theological-hermeneutic intention to deepen and clarify the writing of theological history itself.