Sunday, April 8, 2012

Being Black in the Czech Republic

Photo: Viktor Chlad, Lidové noviny - Martin Kříž teaching Chinese
Hat tip Blackgermans 
In the last posting (for now ) in the series on Black people in the Czech Republic, two interviews. The first is a radio interview on Czech radio with Martin Kříž, who talks about his “painful experience” of growing up as a mixed-race child in more or less mono-cultural pre-1989 Prague. And about how he is helping today’s black Czech children through a new organisation called Čokoládové děti, Chocolate Children. And he talks about his main activity, teaching and translating Chinese, as well as helping Czech firms do business in China. Read or listen to his story here at

The second interview is also on the same Czech radio show but now with three black people about their experience of living in the Czech Republic. They were asked if they ever felt discriminated against and how did they perceive the country.

The intro: In the past 20 years, the number of foreigners living in the Czech Republic has increased dramatically as a consequence of the opening of the Iron Curtain. Still, the country is far from being as diverse as most other European nations, for example France or Germany, and the vast majority of the Czech population remains Caucasian. During communism, the few black people [Cubans] who lived here stuck out like a sore thumb. Nowadays, their number has of course increased, but the size of the black community is still quite small.

The interviewees are Martin Kříž, Tinuola Awopetu, a black expat and well known writer of the blog “Black Girl in Prague”. And Bernard Tecquim, a native of the Ivory coast, who moved to the Czech Republic to study and eventually started a family there. Read or listen to their stories at

Also put a google translate on the very interesting interview (Chech), "Czechs with a different skin colour"

Black Girl in Prague
Čokoládové děti (Chocolate Children)

Previous postings:
Black people in Czech - Meet opera singer Filip Bandžak
Yemi Akinyemi’s JAD Prague Dance Company and Kanye West’s “Runaway"
Black in Czech - TV News presenter Zuzana Tvarůžková
Black Czech writer Zmeškal won EU Prize for Literature in 2011

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