The Ph.D. Program in History

at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York

GC Events

3/13 – MARTIN BECK MATUŠTÍK on Out of Silence: Repair Across Generations

The Association for Critical Theory (ACT)

with the generous support of the

Doctoral Students Council (DSC)



Martin Beck Matuštík

Out of Silence: Repair Across Generations


Wednesday, March 13



City University Of New York Graduate Center

365 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY

Room 5414


Join us as Professor Martin Beck Matuštík reads from his new memoir, as he reflects upon various philosophical, existential, and political themes, as seen from the perspective of a second generation Holocaust survivor. Dealing with issues of trans-generational memory, repair, and coming to terms with the past, this work promises to be of interest to many, in its exploration of themes that make us all human.

Martin Beck Matuštík was 11 when the Soviet tanks invaded Prague. In 1969, at 12, he published a photo from the funeral of Jan Palach, a Charles University philosophy student who immolated himself in protest of the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia that took place in August 1968. While a first-year student at Charles University, at 19, he signed “Charta 77,” the Czechoslovak manifesto for human rights, issued in January 1977 by Vaclav Havel, Jan Patocka, and Jiri Hajek. He became a political refugee in August of that year. As a Fulbright student of Jürgen Habermas in Frankfurt am Main in 1989, he witnessed the historical November fall of the Berlin Wall and the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia that led to the election of Vaclav Havel as the first Czechoslovak President after the fall of the Iron Curtain.

Martin Beck Matuštík is currently the Lincoln Professor of Ethics & Religion, Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies, and Director of Center for Critical Inquiry and Cultural Studies at Arizona State University. Professor Matuštík has published six single author books, edited two collections, and co-edited New Critical Theory, a series at Rowman and Littlefield Publishers. Among his publications are Postnational Identity: Critical Theory and Existential Philosophy in Habermas, Kierkegaard, and Havel (1993); Specters of Liberation: Great Refusals in the New World Order (1998); Jürgen Habermas: A Philosophical-Political Profile (2001); and Kierkegaard in Post/Modernity (1995), co-edited with Merold Westphal. His most recent book is Radical Evil and the Scarcity of Hope: Postsecular Meditations (2008).