Report: Playwright-Turned-Politician Václav Havel Possibly Returning Pen to Page

News   Report: Playwright-Turned-Politician Václav Havel Possibly Returning Pen to Page Playwright Václav Havel, who put down his pen to take up office as president of the Czech Republic (part of the former Czechoslovakia), could return to his writing work, according to BBC News.

Jakub Hladik, an aide for the scribe-turned-politico, told the news outlet that the former president — who left office in 2003 following his second term — was planning a two-month leave to study at the Library of Congress. His aim is to write a work based on William Shakespeare's King Lear as well as an autobiography.

The Prague-born playwright began his theatre career as a stagehand following his years of military service. His play The Garden Party was first produced in 1963, but following political turmoil in his country in 1968, he was banned from the theatre. This led to his political activism, which came to a head when his Charter 77 manifesto was published and he was imprisoned for five years. A leading figure in 1989's peaceful "Velvet Revolution" which sought to overthrow the communist government, he would be elected president by the Federal Assembly and then by the people in the 1990 free election. He served as president until 1992, then was elected president of the new Czech Republic from 1993 to 2003.

Havel's plays The Memorandum, The Increased Difficulty of Concentration, Largo desolato and Temptation have played Off-Broadway at the Public Theatre and Lincoln Center Theatre. Other works include A Butterfly on the Aerial, Guardian Angel, The Conspirators, The Beggar's Opera, Unveiling (Private View), Audience (Conversation), A Hotel in the Hills, Protest, Mistake and Redevelopment. His latter work was completed in 1987. Also a publish writer, his books include "Letters to Olga," "Open Letters" and "Disturbing the Peace."

The BBC also reports the 68-year-old has discussed publishing a book of conversations with friends, including former Polish dissident-journalist Adam Michnik and British historian Timothy Garton Ash.

The former statesman can be found on the web at http://www.vaclavhavel.cz

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