The journalist and trade union functionary Karl Matal, born at Vienna in 1923 from a family with Czech roots, has devoted his whole life to the Czech minority in Vienna.
His private library comprises books, magazines and documents concerned with labour union and socio-political movements as well as a comprehensive collection of materials about the Czech and Slovak minorities in Vienna:
In addition, publications of authors in exile, after 1948 and in the years after the "Prague Spring" 1968, play an important role. The collection also contains magazines such as Paternoster und Vyber, edited by signatories of the "Charta 77" living in Vienna, and other papers published in Europe, Canada and the USA.
The special importance of the Matal collection is its archival value. Karl Matal collected a unique archival fonds covering all aspects of the political, social and cultural life of the Czech and Slovak minorities. Of particular interest is the documentation of the history of the Czech and Slovak ethnic groups in Austria, above all in the light of their associations. Other records are concerned with