Jan Weiss

Jan Weiss (1892–1972) was one of the founders of Czech science fiction, alongside Karel Čapek whose futuristic plays and novels are known to English-language readers. Both writers anticipated the post-war development of Czech science fiction and both had a disturbingly prophetic vision unparalleled by their successors.

Weiss was born in a small mountain town and enrolled as a law student in Vienna after high school. He had barely completed two semesters when World War I broke out and he was drafted into the Austro-Hungarian Army in 1914. In 1916, he was taken prisoner by the Russians and spent the rest of the war in prisoner-of-war camps. After he was rescued and cured from typhoid fever, Weiss joined Czechoslovak legions in Russia before returning to his homeland in 1920. He lived in Prague until his death in 1972, working as a public servant and enjoying the support of the Communist establishment which honoured him with several awards, including the Artist of Merit.

Authored by Jan Weiss

Jan Weiss
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