Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937-1948

Prague Winter A Personal Story of Remembrance and War Madeleine Albright has written a remarkable story of adventure and passion tragedy and courage set against the backdrop of occupied Czechoslovakia and World War II In so doing she provides fresh in

  • Title: Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937-1948
  • Author: Madeleine K. Albright
  • ISBN: 9780449012055
  • Page: 344
  • Format: Audio CD
  • Madeleine Albright has written a remarkable story of adventure and passion, tragedy and courage, set against the backdrop of occupied Czechoslovakia and World War II In so doing, she provides fresh insights into the events that shaped her career and challenges us to think deeply about the moral dilemmas that arise in our own lives Vaclav Havel Before Madeleine Albrigh Madeleine Albright has written a remarkable story of adventure and passion, tragedy and courage, set against the backdrop of occupied Czechoslovakia and World War II In so doing, she provides fresh insights into the events that shaped her career and challenges us to think deeply about the moral dilemmas that arise in our own lives Vaclav Havel Before Madeleine Albright turned twelve, her life was shaken by the Nazi invasion of Czechoslovakia the country where she was born the Battle of Britain, the near total destruction of European Jewry, the Allied victory in World War II, the rise of communism, and the onset of the Cold War Albright s experiences, and those of her family, provide a lens through which to view the most tumultuous dozen years in modern history Drawing on her memory, her parents written reflections, interviews with contemporaries, and newly available documents, Albright recounts a tale that is by turns harrowing and inspiring Prague Winter is an exploration of the past with timeless dilemmas in mind and, simultaneously, a journey with universal lessons that is intensely personal.

    One thought on “Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937-1948”

    1. On completion:Never was I bored when I listened to this book. Never was I confused by the facts. The balance between historical detail and personal family events was perfect. I enjoyed that the history of Czechoslovakia during the war was thoroughly covered as well as what happened to her family. I adored learning about Madeleine as a childe was no angel and what she tells us is often very funny. She got a D minus in geography! OK, that was when she was still very young, so we can forgive this. [...]

    2. Rating = 3.5 starsI rounded up rather than down because the book gave me a completely different perspective on World War II. Specifically, how the betrayal at Munich looked from the Czechoslovakian viewpoint. They were abandoned by their sworn allies when Hitler invaded. I once heard a recording of Dylan Thomas reading his poem, "The Hand That Signed the Paper," and it moved me to tears. That poem came to my mind as I read about the consequences of appeasing Hitler. poetryfoundation/poem/The tit [...]

    3. Madeleine Albright has written a very fascinating and compelling book, shedding light on her native Czechoslovakia and its history, her parents and the challenges faced by their generation, her extended family, and her formative years (up to age 10). Prior to 1918, Czechoslovakia existed only as a dream in the minds of a number of dedicated, hard-working, intelligent and astute Czechs and Slovaks. Of their number, there was one man who stood out head and shoulders above the rest: Tomas Masaryk ( [...]

    4. This fascinating book is at once a personal memoir, a history of Czechoslovakia and a narrative of events in Europe during the Second World War. The project of writing the book began when Dr. Albright, a life-long Christian at the age of 59, learned that she had been born a Jew and that many of her relatives (including three grandparents) had died in the Holocaust. She writes,I was shocked and, to be honest, embarrassed to discover that I had not known my family history better Nor was I entirely [...]

    5. As someone who lived in Prague and studied eastern european history, this was just OK. Albright's own personal history (or tragedy in these years) is gripping. However, her historical background discussion, including her depiction of the first Czechoslovak Republic (1918-1939) is either facile or naive if not wrong. It is a very Czech-centric view typical of what has published by Czechs and recycles the "noble Czech democrats" myth which they themselves created. The story of the fall of the firs [...]

    6. I picked up this book because I love the Czechs, those intelligent, gracious people. This is a well-told story of one Czech who later became a very influential American. If it is a curse to have been born in interesting times, Dr. Albright was certainly well and truly cursed. But, as in the best fairy tales, the curse was balanced by having been blessed with wonderfully prescient parents who stayed one step ahead of events and kept their little daughter safe. The nation of their birth, Czechoslo [...]

    7. Had I known in advance exactly what this book was about, I would have left it on the library shelf and had denied myself an excellent read.Madeleine Albright tells the story of Czechoslovakia before, during, and after World War II in a compelling, easy to follow narrative. The experiences of her family provide a thread since her father was an ambassador so she personally met many of the politicos involved, even though she was a young child. She relies on her father's papers and personal intervie [...]

    8. Prague Winter is a very well-written textbook. The subtitle, though, should really be "A History of Czechoslovakian Involvement in World War II"; if that appeals to you, then you are part of the (very) small target audience for this book.

    9. Prague Winter is a fascinating account of the political and social history of Czechoslakia in the late 1930s through till 1948; from the threat to the actuality of Nazi Germany's invasion, the bitter struggles of Czech communities in exile as well as in their occupied homeland during the war and then the growing Communist ascendancy after it. Her immediate family survived the war in London because her father, as a diplomat, was able to arrange the family's safe exit before the German grip closed [...]

    10. Written by former US secretary of state and UN ambassador Madeleine Albright, Prague Winter is a seamlessly woven amalgam: part family memoir, part political and cultural history, and part discerning examination of how people make difficult, sometimes world-altering, moral choices. It covers the turbulent first half of twentieth century Europe and is focused most closely on Czechoslovakia, a distinctive and fascinating country this book made me want to visit. As a naturalized American citizen an [...]

    11. Finally, a readable explanation of how an eastern European county came to be behind the "Iron Curtain". Hopefully the future will hold such volumes for the others.Albright tells how Czechoslovakia was created after WWI. Not too long afterward, its fledgling democracy died as its German minority helped Germany take it away. Later, its second fledgling democracy helped Russia take it away. It's a sad story with historically significant names (Eduard Benes, Thomas Masaryk, Jan Masaryk, Klement Gott [...]

    12. I so admire Ms. Albright, and I appreciate that with all she's accomplished she has elected to write "books for the rest of us" that are accessible and intelligent at the same time - no compromises either way. This is her third book and it focuses on the history of Czechoslovakia (the country of her birth and ancestry), primarily the events leading up to and during WWII, as intertwined with stories and memories of her family's history in the first half of the 20th C. Simply put, it's all fascina [...]

    13. One of the most readable histories of the Czech Republic and Europe from the Middle Ages through the Prague Spring and ultimate freedom from the USSR.As a child, Madeline Albright's father was a Czech ambassador. She was present during the Nazi takeover in WWII, and went with her family to exile in Britain, where her father gave radio addresses to Czechs still at home.When she found out as an adult that her family were hidden Jews, she sought out the history and fate of her family members. She d [...]

    14. Very enjoyable read and informative account of the events that occurred in Czechoslovakia before, during, and just after WWII.  It was interesting to learn about the Munich Agreement and the appeasement policy towards Hitler in the late 1930's.  These events had a direct impact on the fate of Czechoslovakia for many years to come.  The story is more of a history book than it is a memoir, since she was just a young girl in the early 1940's.  However, she does share how the war affected many o [...]

    15. A wonderful book of Ms. Albright's early life after finding out as an adult that her past was not what she had thought. Regardless of your politics, this is a good read.

    16. This was titled A Personal Story of Remembrance and Was but wasn't very personal at all. It was a little dry, fact based, nothing wrong but also never caught fire. Meh.

    17. "The new [Woodrow Wilson statue] is paired in Washington, D.C with a comparable memorial to Tomas Masaryk, highlighting the deep historic ties that bind Czechs and Slovaks to the United States, a bond that is also part of my inheritance."(p. 410) Madeline Albright, you just summarized the story of my life!I intended to read Albright's memoir of her political career, Madame Secretary, over the summer. Instead, I picked up the book sitting next to it on the shelf; I was looking for something a bit [...]

    18. This book is a good history of Czechoslovakia during WWII, with the added personal touch of Albright's family story to make it even more interesting. There are many missed chances, betrayals, and poor choices in the personal and political histories, as well as moments of integrity, courage, and hope. I read this on my e-reader in an "enriched" edition that had several very short videos featuring Albright and her commentary on some of the larger issues, as well as photos and artifacts not in the [...]

    19. An account of the events before, during, and after WWII from a Czech perspective. This is less of a personal memoir than an excellent, well written and easily read history lesson, one which had me shaking my head in horror many times. The author was too young to remember many of the events personally, or for them to be meaningful to her, but her account of the fates of many family members is very moving, as are her personal reflections in the final chapter. I have only one criticism. Given that [...]

    20. This is a non-fiction book written by Madeleine Albright, the first woman to ever hold the office of Secretary of State and she served in the Clinton Administration. So it was no surprise the tone that this book takes early on. I also, liked that she was her own narrator for the audio.This wasn't what I thought it would be. I see her as a little girl on the cover and I wrongly assumed it was going to be about her early years in Czechoslovakia along with some family genealogy. But is all bout the [...]

    21. 8.5/10Who knew that Madeleine Albright could write like this? The book focuses a lot on Czechoslovakia just prior to and during the second World War. Albright was born just before the commencement of World War II and her dad served as a fairly prominent Czech politician during that time. While some of the book reads a bit like a history of her family, a majority is a well told description of the war from the point of view of the Czechs. As deep as all that may seem, the book is extremely easy to [...]

    22. I enjoyed this book very much. It seamlessly combines her own family's story with the history of Czechoslovakia from the country's creation after World War I, its years as a democracy, occupation by the Nazis, liberation, and eventual takeover by its own Communists and Stalin in 1948. Her father, Joseph, was part of the Czech government in exile in London during the war, always supported Czech democracy, and knew and worked with many of the most important people of the time. The personal aspects [...]

    23. I didn't expect to enjoy this one as much as I did - fabulous story of not only Albright's family's experience during World War II (much of her family were secular Jews and were caught up in the Holocaust) but of her beloved Czechoslovakia's experience during the war. Her father was a diplomat and had a front row seat to a lot of the story. I read it in one sitting (although admittedly I was on an airplane) and highly recommend.

    24. Fantastic book focusing on the Czech people's experience during WWII that is told through the family experience of the former Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright.The book was very informative and interesting. Parts definitely made me cry, but a lot of WWII related stuff does. The personal sacrifice and bravery in the face of such terrible events is very moving!

    25. really excellent nonfiction writing. A memoir of a turbulent childhood as a refugee from WWII Czechoslovakia, along with a telling of the painful history of that time from the viewpoint of a late-in-life Secretary of State. a remarkable book- I considered giving it five stars and barely backed down.

    26. I desperately wanted to enjoy this book, but constantly found myself nodding off. The bits where Madeleine shares her own story are deeply compelling, but the broader telling of the historical machinations were a bit of a slog, sorry to say.

    27. I did not set out to read a historical overview of Czechoslovakia, but found myself enthralled by this narrative. Thinking I was going to read more of a personal narrative of World War 2, instead I found myself gripped by scene after scene of political events caused by circumstances that were happening in quick succession during one of the most turbulent periods in world history."Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War", explores the events in Czechoslovakia and Europe leading up [...]

    28. Prague Win­ter: A Per­sonal Story of Remem­brance and War, 1937–1948 by Madeleine Albright is a non-fiction book in which the author talks about the years men­tioned from her per­spec­tive. Some­what per­sonal, adven­tur­ous and mov­ing, this mem­oir takes the reader on a Euro­pean his­tory les­son which is not often told."There is not deeper cause for despair than mali­cious hope (Hitler proved that), and few traits more valu­able than sad­ness and anger at suf­fer­ing. Th [...]

    29. I'm giving five stars because this book is the perfect mix of history and memoir - a combination that appeals strongly to me - and because it's additionally relevant to me, as my own family is from Czechoslovakia, my father only a little older than Albright, my grandparents only a little older than her parents. There are really three threads to this story, all of which are interesting and worthwhile. The first is the history; and just as it's easier to make sense of a story by following a single [...]

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