Conceptualized with the guidance of playwright, poet, and
statesman Václav Havel, OFF was envisioned as a place where the human rights
heroes of the 20th century could meet and share their stories with
the leading activists of today.

The inaugural three-day summit featured icons of the
literature of survival such as Holocaust survivor and Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel, Chinese-British author Jung Chang, Tibetan former prisoner of
conscience Palden Gyatso, Russian
human rights advocate Elena Bonner, and Chinese former political prisoner Harry Wu.