This authorized biography of Havel, based on unrestricted access to him, his circle, and even his enemies, is not only the first definitive account of one of the modern world’s great moral and political leaders but also a vivid panorama of the tumultuous events of his times. Havel’s life, like that of his African counterpart Nelson Mandela, has been shaped and determined by the large political shifts of the twentieth century. Readers will taste the moments of joy, irony, farce, and misfortune through which he has lived, and realize that he has taught the world more about the powerful and the powerless, power-grabbing and power-sharing, than virtually anyone else on the world stage.

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