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Notes from Underground: Book Discussion with Roger Scruton April 17th Event

“A philosopher’s exploration of communist Prague: Roger Scruton’s novel conveys the tangled morality of that forgotten time and place with ease, elegance, and deep conviction.” — Anne Applebaum, author, Gulag and Iron Curtain

The collapse of Soviet communism in 1989 was, among many other things, an epochal event in the history of the human spirit. On the eve of its twenty-fifth anniversary, philosopher and cultural critic Roger Scruton has commemorated the event with a novel of the spirit, born of his personal involvement in the Prague resistance during the 1980s.

Notes from Underground is a searing drama of love, family, and self-discovery. Set in the last years of communist Czechoslovakia, the novel evokes a world in which every word and gesture bears a double meaning. Fallible men and women pursue truth and vocation—first in the narrow recesses of state subjugation and cruelty, and then in the sudden dawn of freedom which brings astounding revelations.

On April 17, Scruton delivered a talk on Notes from Underground followed by audience discussion. Special guests Petr Gandalovic, Czech Ambassador to the United States, and John O’Sullivan, Director of the Danube Institute, offered commentaries. The session, co-sponsored by the Common Sense Society of Washington, DC, was moderated by Hudson Distinguished Fellow Christopher DeMuth.

Roger Scruton’s numerous books include, most recently, Beauty, The Uses of Pessimism, How to Think Seriously About the Planet, Our Church: A Personal History of the Church of England, and The Soul of the World. Notes from Underground is his fifth novel.

Panel

Christopher DeMuth Moderator

Distinguished Fellow, Hudson Institute

Roger Scruton Speaker

Author, Notes from Underground

Petr Gandalovič Panelist

Czech Ambassador to the United States

John O’Sullivan Panelist

Director, Danube Institute

Experts

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