Geografie 2006, 111, 343-367

Development of geography at Charles University in the context of Czech geography since the middle of the 19th century

Leoš Jeleček1, Pavel Chromý1, Jiří Martínek2

1Katedra sociální geografie a regionálního rozvoje, Přírodovědecká fakulta UK, Albertov 6, 128 43 Praha 2, Czechia
2Historický ústav AV ČR, v. v. i., Prosecká 76, 190 00 Praha 9, Czechia

The article informs readers of the monothematic issue of Geografie journal devoted to the 150th anniversary of geography at Charles University in Prague about historical roots of geography at Prague University in the context of its development in Czechia during the last 150 years. The aim of the contribution is not to assess either the history of geographical thinking or the latest history of geography, but to present above all the development of personal and institutional backing of scientific and pedagogical activities in Czech geography. When assessing this development, the authors take account of the fact that Czech geography, as a discipline of science at Charles University, was developing in relatively frequently changing and sensibly different constitutional and political systems, socio-economical and socio-cultural conditions and also in different geopolitical situations and links of the Czech state. Besides external conditions that have been determining the changes of geography, the authors stress also the role of internal (subjective) factors - existence of key personalities of the discipline (fathers founders), their capacity to get recognition in the international context and to form their continuators.