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Bohumil Hrabal

Bohumil Hrabal (1914-1997) was born in Moravia and started writing poems under the influence of French surrealism. In the early 1950s he began to experiment with a stream-of-consciousness style, and eventually wrote such classics as "Closely Watched Trains" (made into an Academy Award-winning film directed by Jiri Menzel), "The Death of Mr. Baltisberger", and "Too Loud a Solitude". He fell to his death from the fifth floor of a Prague hospital, apparently trying to feed the pigeons.