Stoppard was one of 10 European literary heavyweights who signed a letter urging action by the EU to end the genocide in Darfur. The Mail & Guardian has a good article about how Bob Geldof worked to shape the letter and achieve consensus among the likes of Harold Pinter, Vaclav Havel, Gunter Grass and Umberto Eco. (Stoppard reportedly objected to one phrase as "otiose.")
Stoppard also met with Havel and other key dissidents from Czechoslovakia's Charter 77 protest movement to discuss its legacy.
Meanwhile, Carlin Romano in the Philadelphia Inquirer examines Russian intellectuals past and present through the lens of "The Coast of Utopia."