Sitting on Santa’s lap? Not in this country

In Winter on November 30, 2011 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: ,

How does one convince their son or daughter that Christmas presents are not purchased by adults when the kids see people with wrapped gifts in malls or on the streets everywhere? It is harder and harder to retell the story about  Santa or the more traditional gift-giver, Christkind. The latter is invisible and immaterial and nobody actually “knows” what the figure looks like but the former is, of course, the straight out of an American made-for-TV family comedy about Christmas Santa Claus. While the Czech Republic has adopted Santa as a Christmas figure, his prominence is much smaller. For example, the sitting on Santa’s lap is virtually non-existent. It is only practiced in a handful of shopping malls around the country (my guess would be five to ten, and I could possibly name all of them). Coincidentally, this Christmas tradition was recently banned in the United Kingdom.

The fact that Christkind can still beat Santa in terms of the number of fans and followers is probably the reason why Santa is more of a fairytale character. According to a 2009 research, 87 percent of children believe that Christkind brings the presents. No Czech kid knows the names of his reindeer. Only a few (who have taken English classes taught by a native speaker) can probably name Rudolph. In addition, most Czech kids stick to Christkind due to the fact that Santa appears too human and he is often portrayed as having made, purchased, wrapped and transported the presents. Christkind, on the other hand, is much more virtual, which gives kids more room for imagination…


One Response to “Sitting on Santa’s lap? Not in this country”

  1. The Czech tradition should be maintained! It’s terrible to see the country being invaded by all this Xmas crap we have in the UK. It’s all about getting people to spend more money….They have the Xmas coca cola truck turn up in many towns here now. What’s that all about! DOn’t fall for it! SHop local, from local sources. Local Xmas markets for example…I personally only buy small presents that I can buy from Olomouc market..on one day!

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