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Living the Velvet Revolution by [Lockwood, Sunny]
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Living the Velvet Revolution Kindle Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 377 KB
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005EIBNFE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #363,412 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Having not read the reviews, I was slightly surprised that this was effectively a long journalistic piece - clearly entirely my own fault!. That being said it was well and empathetically written, with very interesting content and overall I enjoyed it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Václav Havel having taken the people into the future had to convince them to start doing things for themselves - and there lies the twist in the tale. How to break the yoke of communist thinking. The book is not written like a dusty political thesis, and makes for a excellent quick read.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 3.8 out of 5 stars 18 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A vivid piece of reportage from a country in transition 19 Dec. 2011
By Gabriella West - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
In this finely written piece of reportage, Sunny Lockwood travels to Czechoslovakia in August of 1990, a country in transition. The Velvet Revolution has just happened, and Vaclav Havel is now president. The people, meanwhile, are coming to terms with what freedom means for them. Without being overly didactic, Lockwood draws a fascinating portrait of how mostly middle-aged, middle-class Czech people, who have lived all their lives under a stagnant and corrupt system imposed on them from above, are coming to terms with radical changes. One of the most remarkable parts to me was that one of the people she spoke to didn't even know who Vaclav Havel was before he became leader of the country ... because his name had been so effectively suppressed by the government. She also talks to a hopeful student involved in the early part of the demonstrations and a guarded, pensive dissident, and checks out the new music and arts scene starting in Wenceslas Square. Reading this piece now is like time travel. Not at all dated, it seems utterly fresh. And timely, in view of Havel's death.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Witness to the Promise of Change 17 Aug. 2013
By Arletta Dawdy - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
To read Sunny Lockwood's THE VELVET REVOLUTION is to go back in time to August 1990 when Prague was still in the throes of adjusting to the peaceful, some called it gentle, overthrow of communism and the welcoming of the promise of democracy. From afar, Lockwood was hooked by the ascendance of playwright/human rights activist Vaclav Havel to the presidency; once in-country, she muses over what it could mean for the United States if, instead of politicians, we elected artists, musicians and the like to office. While the writer dreams, Czechoslovakians struggle to understand what democracy means and it varies greatly between generations.

As she spends more time with 23 year old Roman, translator and guide, he tells her of his hopes for expanded opportunities and a new acceptance of meaning for the worth of work...as opposed to the lack of incentive and commitment in the previous forty years. They meet a street vendor, an eighteen year old shoe stand operator, who has rallied to the concept of entrepreneurship with plans to fund his education through his work. He is unusual on the street that now bursts with musical, dance and theatrical performances alongside evolving tributes to past martyrs.

An aging dissident, Pavel, continues to hide in fear of police harassment/recriminations; on signing Charter 77 over previous human rights violations, he was forced underground. His artistry is barely enough to support his family and he cautions Lockwood that no photographs or notes are to be taken in their interview. She complies, wins his trust and an invitation to return.

A middle aged couple, the Mikulas, present a very staid, even disbelieving acceptance and understanding of the revolution. They simply do not have the background to easily abandon their communist upbringing and rise in that system. They hope for more freedom to travel, more educational benefits for their sons but remain myoptic.

Lockwood had trouble making her way through the country's telephone and train systems, running into severe complications and frustrations that indicate transition would be difficult in the future. I would hope she could return one day to revisit the people she met and observe the status of the now split countries, the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Lockwood's writing in this extended essay borders on magical in places: "I picture brittle winter air filled with steam from 100,000 Czechs shouting for freedom; Smoke surrounds him (Pavel) like a shroud and then thins out, filling the air with its earthy aroma; and (on the streets) a sense of newness, of release, of possibility that is almost palpable." This is a wordsmith at her best.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! A timely read 21 Mar. 2014
By RM - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Sunny Lockwood published an essay of great importance for we in the West to understand the magnitude of socialistic, communist rule, and what it does to a person's sense of individual identity, confidence, accepting responsibility, work ethics, thinking for themselves and how they fit into humanity. We in the U.S. are slowly becoming a socialistic nation without ideals, living the Constitution established by our founding Fathers, religious freedom, and ruled by we the people instead of government. Sadly we are becoming a divided nation and lacking leadership. Wake up people! Read this book!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A brief, but excellent read 9 May 2014
By Colin Walsh - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
a short essay about Prague immediately after the Velvet Revolution. It's filled with wonderful little details about life after communism and is well written throughout.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An intimate view portraying the people who made history in czechoslovakia. 23 Dec. 2012
By Charles F. Herndon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Personal portraits of the people who made history in Czechoslovakia.
From President Vaclav Havel to the many struggling folks who made it happen.
Well written and full of the celebratory feelings of that time.
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