Department of North American Studies
Welcome to the page of the Department of North American Studies
FROM SILICON VALLEY TO NEW YORK AND WASHINGTON, FROM ALASKA TO MEXICO CITY
The North American region with the United States at its center is the engine of global entrepreneurship, creativity, research, and innovation in today's interconnected world. As a consequence of the political, economic, and culturally civilizational changes of the last three decades, the region defines the future of the world's labor markets including the development of the digital economy and artificial intelligence. The political, geostrategic, as well as legislative and regulatory framework in which these changes occur is primarily created within North America and it further influences the European Union and other regions.
The Department of North American Studies is part of the Institute of International Studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague. We focus on our research on American history, as well as on contemporary political, economic, social, and cultural issues relevant in the American context. Geographically, the primary attention is on the North American region, with emphasis on the United States.
We observe, analyze, and study everything that happens, figuratively speaking, from Silicon Valley to New York and Washington, from Alaska to Mexico City. Students thus have access to top specialists in the region and its politics, economics, culture, media and communication, international relations and modern history. An essential part of study and research at the Department of North American Studies is the historical development and its contextual connection with current events on the domestic and foreign scene.
Foreign teachers, especially from the United States, regularly work at the Department. Together with the plurality of opinion of the Department's home teachers, they further strengthen the uniqueness of the Department. It is not only because of this that the Department of North American Studies is now the most sought-after department at the Institute of International Studies in terms of the number of students enrolled.
History of our Department
Department of American Studies was established in 1994 as part of the Institute of International Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University as the only interdisciplinary center dealing with the American studies from the perspectives of history, economics and political science in the Czech Republic. This uniqueness has become the cornerstone since the foundation of the department and continues to this day.
PhDr. Petr Mareš, CSc. became its first director; he previously served at the Faculty of Social Sciences as Secretary of the Department of Political Science and Vice Dean for Student Affairs. Shortly after the founding of the Department, he was replaced by prof. PhDr. Svatava Raková, CSc., distinguished historian specializing in the early history of the USA, who also simultaneously was the director of the Institute of History, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic. In 1999 doc. PhDr. Miloš Calda, Woodrow Wilson Freedom Award laureate, became head of the department; he was the head for thirteen years. The Department of American Studies at that time was far smaller in number of teachers and also students.
In 2011, PhDr. et Mgr. Kryštof Kozák, Ph.D., became the head of the Department. He applied his experience of study stays at Bard College, University of California San Diego and Freie Universitaet Berlin. Under his leadership, the department organized, for example, the Allen Ginsberg Memorial Festival on the occasion of the 50th anniversary, when Ginsberg became King of the May Day in Prague. Over time, the department's study and focus have expanded to include the critical neighbors of the United States - Canada and Mexico. This act strengthened even further the Department's interdisciplinarity. To emphasize this aspect, in 2015 the department renamed the Department of North American Studies.
The current head is PhDr. Jan Hornát, Ph.D., who previously served as Head of the Department of European Programs at the Ministry of Justice of the Czech Republic and as a researcher at the Institute of International Relations in Prague.
If you want to contact us, please, send us an e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or simply like our Facebook page - Department of North American Studies FSV UK that features up-to-date information about events organized by the Department as well as interesting news from the region of North America.
For exact location and contact information, see the Contact section.