Twenty-five years ago today the Velvet Revolution kicked off in what was then Czechoslovakia to bring an end to the one-party government of the Communist Party. This exclusive translation of a feature from the Czech journal A2 Cultural Bi-Weekly explains that the events of 1989 were about more than just Václav Havel, a playwright and leader in the revolution who was elected president in 1990. A generation of unfulfilled promises later, Czechs are struggling to revive the spirit of not only democracy and humanism, but also socialism.

This article originally appeared in Ricochet, November 17, 2014.