The Bibliography Department catalogues articles about Czech and foreign theatres that have been published in newspapers and magazines, as well as professional literature issued in the Czech Republic. All articles about Czech studies and selected foreign theatres are recorded from chosen foreign periodicals. The collection of the Bibliography of the Theatre Institute documents entries of these articles in card catalogues and in the computer database. (Library and the Documentation Department of the Theatre Institute also have collections of their own articles.)
In 1994, the process of compiling and encompassing entries of articles from all daily newspapers published nationwide and selected periodicals oriented toward cultural activities began. Excerpts associated with Czech and world theatres taken from the local professional press since 1990 have been added to the database. Those that have not yet been catalogued into the bibliography are successively excerpted and added. All articles from selected foreign periodicals about Czech studies and foreign theatres are recorded. In this way, the Bibliography Department continually catalogues 219 periodical titles of local origin and 84 foreign periodicals. Currently more than 200 000 articles have been catalogued.
A concurrent bibliography can be found in the computer database that allows various manners of searches and retrievals.
The Bibliography is documented in several collections, which reflect different stages of attempts that have been made to create a bibliography of Czech theatre (see also History). The majority of this can be found in the card catalogues.
The historical card catalogue contains more than 300 000 entries of Czech and world theatre found in selected newspapers and journals from 1860 (originally the "Národní listy") until 1990. The entries are categorised according to the following: subject, name, place and author.
This catalogue system contains approximately 50 000 entries of printed and reproduced plays originally written in Czech or translated into the Czech language. Texts published exclusively for magazines have not been catalogued. Dramatic works have been catalogued up the year 1972.
This was originally prepared for publication, but remains in the form of a card catalogue. It contains entries of articles about the theatre from national and regional dailies, as well as culturally oriented and specialized periodicals. The index is catalogued methodically.
Printed books about the theatre have been published in five-year intervals from 1945 to 1985. Individual volumes have emerged under other titles. The first four registers were published under the title Literature about Theatre and Plays for the Theatre (Literatura o divadle a divadelní hry; 1945–1970), and another two volumes under the title Books about the Theatre (Knihy o divadle), covering the period from 1971 to 1985, yet without the inclusion of theatre productions. In 1967, the Theatre Institute published a list of theatre journals and programmes by Miroslav Laiske, entitled Theatre Journals in Bohemia and Moravia 1772–1963 (Divadelní periodika v Čechách a na Moravě 1772–1963).
The Theatre Institute has published a total of eight lists of dramatic texts from specific countries from the material in the card catalogue of "Card Catalogue of Czech Theatre Works and Theatre Works Translated into Czech" (Plays of the Antiquity, Bulgarian Plays, Yugoslavian Plays, Hungarian Plays, Polish Plays, Romanian Plays, Russian and Soviet Plays, Northern and Dutch Plays).
The bibliography of personalities includes a selection of personalities that are found in the edition of Drama – Theatre – Documentation (Drama – divadlo – dokumentace) published by the Theatre Institute. It includes such Czech personalities as J. J. Kolár, G. Preissová, the Mrštík brothers, J. Čapek, A. Dvořák, V. Dyk, J. Mahen, and V. Nezval. As well, a list of the works of J. Zeyer, O. Scheinpflugová, E. Bozdich, O. Fischer, J. Kvapil and J. Langer is contained in the manuscript.
From 1959 to 1974, the Theatre Institute published a selected annotated bibliography of articles from foreign journals in its Bulletion of the Theatre Institute (Bulletin Divadelního ústavu), later in the News of the Theatre Institute (Zprávy Divadelního ústavu), from 1973–1974 in Theatre in the World (Divadlo ve světě), and from 1990–1995 in the News of the Theatre Institute (Zprávy Divadelního ústavu).
This bibliography contains a list of all volumes in their entirety, as well as a register of authors and titles of articles, a cipher of authors of the articles, and an overview of members of the editorial board in the individual volumes. This bibliography appears as a publication of the Theatre Institute.