Plzeňské sympozia

Tomáš Winter

The Blacks and the Car

pp. 145–153 (Czech), summary 154 (English)

One of the media intensely devoted to the relation of the man and the machine in the past was funny drawing and caricature. In this context, particularly the drawings with the motif of a car, appearing in a sharp confrontation with the man, became popular. On several examples, the article studies the development of this topic from around 1900 until the 1930s. Particular attention is devoted to the works of Antonín Pelc and Adolf Hoffmeister. Through an interpretation of Hoffmeister’s illustration with African natives and a caterpillar-tread CitroĎn, which accompanied the Czech translation of the book Khronika nashego vremeni by Ilya Ehrenburg – 10 HP (in English known as ?e Life of the Automobile), the study reaches the theme of the confrontation of the European and ‘primitive’ cultures, or a machine and ‘primitive’ tools. On the example of the Náprstek Museum in Prague, established first as an industrial museum, it shows how such an antithesis was manifested as part of the colonial discourse in practice.

Key words: Bohemian Lands, 19th century, cultural history, drawing, caricature


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