I hope that most Hearts & Minds fans have heard about the death of Vaclav Havel. If you’ve read one of our favorite books of the last decade or so, Steve Garber’s Fabric of Faithfulness: Weaving Together Belief and Behavior (IVP; $16.00) you at least knew a bit about him since Steve cited him. He was a counter-cultural poet and playwright who was imprisoned under the stupid communist regime in the old Czechoslovakia. As providence had it, after the Velvet Revolution he was released from prison and ended up their president. As in his dissident years of the 70s, he wrote about freedom, culture, the importance of words and literature and gave moving, intellectual speeches the world over. His early plays and journals and civic speeches made it clear that humans are called to be responsible. We are called to be morally serious, as Steve sometimes puts it. He was an inspiration to many, across the political and ideological divides. Of course, we stocked his books. Many reports are being filed and some good articles are being written about him now. If you happen to be facebook friends with me, I’ve posted a piece Steve Garber wrote which will only take a few minutes to read. I commend it. Havel was 75 when he died. May he rest in peace.
Another author who admired Havel is James Sire, a mentor to me in some ways, through his many books. Through Jim’s help we have some of the excellent book he wrote on Havel in 2001, Vaclav Havel: The Intellectual Conscience of International Politics: An Introduction, Appreciation & Critique.
It is not only an excellent book about Havel but a great example of Christian engagement; as the subtitle puts in, there is “appreciation and critique.” We should all learn to be gracious and critical, civil but discerning. This is the best introduction to Havel of which I know, and it is by this thoughtful evangelical thinker.
As you may guess (and this is a story itself, a parable of sorts) it didn’t sell well. InterVarsity Press deserves applause for trying; no other press that I knew of did a thoughtful Christian engagement with the great Czech public intellectual. The ones we have are long out of print and in beautifully perfect shape.
We would like to give them away to anyone who has an interest in Mr. Havel and his legacy. While supplies last, they are yours as our gift to you.
Here is the only small catch. When we send out books to our customers we do not add on any “handling” charges. The cost of tape and time (not to mention the credit card fees) are just cost of doing business. We do not inflate shipping costs. In this case, though, since we’re not making anything at all, we figure that with the credit card usage fee, and the credit card percentage they take, and our supplies and the salary of our mail-out staff, we need to add a nominal handling service charge.
So here’s the deal: we will charge a “handling charge” of $1.25 each. The USPS priority mail shipping is $4.75 so it comes to $6 total. Unless you want it to go “media mail” which is slow and a bit unreliable this time of year. That costs a dollar or so less, depending on where it goes, with a total of about $5.00.
OR, if you order any other item from Hearts & Minds and you ask for it, we’ll throw it in absolutely free.
Simple as that.
This is our little way to pay tribute to the playwright politician and to perhaps contribute to our civic insight. Hats off to Havel, thanks to Sire.
Here are four great articles about Havel.
From The Washington Post, Michael Gerson’s “Havel’s Revolution of Truth.”
From the Acton Institute, Edward E. Ericson’s “Living Responsibly: Vaclav Havel’s View”
From Huff Post, Lucas Kavner’s “Tracking Havel: From Orwell to Vermont to Prague”
From Rolling Stone, about the Czech rock band that inspired Havel to write Charter 77…
free book offer
The Intellectual Conscience of International Politics
while supplies last
takes you to the secure Hearts & Minds order form page
just tell us what you want
if you have questions or need more information
just ask us what you need to know
Hearts & Minds 234 East Main Street Dallastown, PA 17313 717-246-333