Dr. Jiří Prokop, Assoc. Prof.
Charles University – Prague (Czech Republic)
Abstract. The Czechs have given the world many important personalities, including pedagogues. In addition to the well-known Jan Amos Komenský
(1592 – 1670), we can also name Gustav Adolf Lindner (1828 – 1887). But for a long time another important pedagogue personality of the 20th century, Přemysl Pitter, remained unknown to the world. In today’s world of intolerance it’s worthwhile to pay attention to the activities of a man who cherished the values by which he lived his life: “Without love, without human compassion with one another, nothing will stand” (Pitter 1974). These are the words of the humanist Přemysl Pitter, a Czech Protestant-oriented thinker, educator, writer, publicist, radical pacifist, and social worker. He founded the famous Prague educational institute “Milíč Houseˮ during the Second World War, and despite strict prohibitions, he visited and supplied the Jews during that time. After the war, he applied for confiscated castles around Prague, where he took care of impoverished German, Jewish, Polish, Czech, and other children. There was no word of him for many years. But why was his birth declared a UNESCO anniversary? Why did he receive one of the highest state awards of the Czech Republic from President Václav Havel? This text addresses such questions.
Keywords: Přemysl Pitter; Milíč House; Operation Castles; social work; pedagogue