In the Slavic Department, we offer 4 semesters of instruction in Czech language on a 2-year rotating basis. Literature and culture courses – LT208: The Writings of Václav Havel, SL254: Introduction to Central Europe (The Culture of Dissent in Czechoslovakia, Poland, and Yugoslavia), LT265: Survey of Literature in the Czech Lands – are offered on an occasional basis. Czech language instruction beyond the fourth semester can be arranged through independent studies. Our program is designed with instruction for everyone from beginners with no experience to graduate students looking to gain knowledge of another Slavic language. Czech language and literature courses are taught by Professor David Danaher.
"To know another language is to live another life." -- T. G. Masaryk, President of the First Czechoslovak Republic
Czech is the language spoken in the Czech Republic (formerly Czechoslovakia: Czech and Slovak are different languages, although they are very close to one another). There are approximately 10 million native speakers of Czech world-wide, and it is believed that Chicago -- after Prague -- has the second-largest population of Czech speakers of any city. According to the latest estimates, there are still anywhere from 40,000 to 100,000 Americans living and working in the Czech Republic.
All of our language courses focus on skill development in speaking, listening, reading, and writing, and are taught in an interactive and communicative manner. Heritage speakers of Czech are encouraged to enroll, although no prior knowledge of Czech or another Slavic language is required for enrollment in the introductory course.
It is not possible to major in Czech, but Czech can be taken to complete the language requirement. In addition, UW-Madison has an official study-abroad program in Prague.
The teaching of Czech language, literature, and culture at UW-Madison is supported in part by donations to the November Fund. For more information about supporting Czech, please contact Professor Danaher.
To find out about the November Fund and ways to support Czech study at UW-Madison, click here.