The Faculty of Arts Commemorates Milada Horáková

They could not deprive her of her internal freedom, dignity, and conviction that people are responsible for themselves and the external world. Therefore, they deprived her of her life.

On Tuesday 27 June 1950 at 5:35 am, the representatives of the Czechoslovak communist regime headed by Klement Gottwald murdered the Doctor of Law Milada Horáková, née Králová. On that day, the death sentence by hanging was carried out also on representatives of the anti-communist resistance – Jan Buchal, theatre critic, Záviš Kalandra, journalist, and Oldřich Pelcl, lawyer and anti-communist fighter. Another nine people of this process were sentenced by the Communists to a life sentence in prison.

The nationally socialistic politician has left the earth in the person of Milada Horáková who had for a long time advocated the improvement of the living conditions of the Czechoslovak citizens, especially women and children. She was the central figure of the Czechoslovak women’s movement. For years, she the support and co-worker of the first Czechoslovak senator and social reformer Františka Plamínková, murdered by Nazis in 1942. Even Horáková was tortured and kept a prisoner by the Nazis. In the courtyard of the Pankrác Prison on that day in June, not only a public figure had passed away, but also the loving mother Jana Horáková, then the mother of a fifteen-year-old daughter. Bohuslav Horák, the participant of the anti-Nazi resistance, who managed to save himself from Communist ill will by emigration at the last minute, had lost his wife whom he supported her whole life.

In her last hours, Milada Horáková voiced a conciliation with her fate and acknowledged her “defeat in the fight” even though the fight led against her was not even once honourable. She even expressed her understanding of the crowd demanding her execution: the people may have been according to her forced and led astray to display the hatred.

The Faculty of Arts, Charles University, honours the memory of Milada Horáková. In memoriam, we express many thanks and admiration for her ability to always meet with her moral principles and democratic views. We will never forget.