Hardback
May 30, 2021
9789633863787
English
480
9.21 Inches (US)
6.26 Inches (US)
1.67 Pounds (US)
$105.00 USD, £85.00 GBP
v2.1 Reference

Reassessing Communism

Concepts, Culture, and Society in Poland 1944–1989

The thirteen authors of this collective work undertook to articulate matter-of-fact critiques of the dominant narrative about communism in Poland while offering new analyses of the concept, and also examining the manifestations of anticommunism. Approaching communist ideas and practices, programs and their implementations, as an inseparable whole, they examine the issues of emancipation, upward social mobility, and changes in the cultural canon.

The authors refuse to treat communism in Poland in simplistic categories of totalitarianism, absolute evil and Soviet colonization, and similarly refuse to equate communism and fascism. Nor do they adopt the neoliberal view of communism as a project doomed to failure. While wholly exempt from nostalgia, these essays show that beyond oppression and bad governance, communism was also a regime in which people pursued a variety of goals and sincerely attempted to build a better world for themselves.

The book is interdisciplinary and applies the tools of social history, intellectual history, political philosophy, anthropology, literature, cultural studies, and gender studies to provide a nuanced view of the communist regimes in east-central Europe.

About the Authors

Katarzyna Chmielewska is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Member of the Center for Cultural and Literary Studies on Communism and the Center for Contemporary Literature and Social Communication at the Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences.

Agnieszka Mrozik is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Member of the Center for Cultural and Literary Studies on Communism and the Archives of Women at the Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences.

Grzegorz Wołowiec is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Head of the Center for Cultural and Literary Studies on Communism at the Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences.

Endorsements

"I have been waiting for years for someone to write this book. Reassessing Communism represents a long-overdue corrective to the one-dimensional approach that has characterized so much historical scholarship on the communist period in Polish history. Breaking away from the image, seen mainly through the lens of political power, as a land only of 'totalitarian' oppression and misgovernance, contributions to this volume show that the Polish People's Republic was also a place in which people pursued diverse goals and sincerely attempted to build a better world for themselves. After all, the communist vision of a better social order necessitated more than mere submission: it also required public compliance, even assent. Reassessing the communist era from this perspective also allows us to critically examine the anticommunist opposition and break away from the unproblematized mythologies that have dominated public memory for too long."—Brian Porter-Szűcs

"Reassessing Communism: Concepts, Culture and Society in Poland, 1944–1989 brings new and important reflections and interpretations of communism in Poland. The book is intended as a polemic with the dominant historical and popular narratives in which communism appears in terms of strangeness: as an aberration or a 'black hole' in Polish history. The authors consistently and convincingly deconstruct this type of narrative. Instead, they propose a picture of communism that cannot be easily subordinated to established patterns, national-centric stereotypes, or totalitarian theories. The authors' approach to communism as a multidimensional 'revolutionary project' is a new and needed perspective in the current state of research on the history of postwar Poland."—Małgorzata Fidelis

9789633863787 : reassessing-communism-chmielewska-mrozik-wo-owiec
Hardback
480 Pages
$105.00 USD

Other Titles in POLITICAL SCIENCE / Political Ideologies / Communism, Post-Communism & Socialism

Under the Radar

R. Eugene Parta
Jun 2022 - Central European University Press
$95.00 USD - Hardback

An American Dissenter

Kent Kreuter, Gretchen Kreuter
Dec 2021 - University Press of Kentucky
$40.00 USD - Paperback / softback
$40.00 USD - Electronic book text

Balkan Village

Irwin T. Sanders
Dec 2021 - University Press of Kentucky
$45.00 USD - Paperback / softback
$45.00 USD - Electronic book text

Other Titles in Marxism & Communism

One Hundred Years of Communist Experiments

edited by Vladimir Tismaneanu, Jordan Luber
Jun 2021 - Central European University Press, an imprint of Central European University Press
$85.00 USD - Hardback

The Anatomy of Post-Communist Regimes

Bálint Magyar, Bálint Madlovics
Feb 2021 - Central European University Press, an imprint of Central European University Press
$125.00 USD - Hardback
$49.99 USD - Paperback / softback

Red Modernism

Mark Steven
Dec 2017 - Johns Hopkins University Press
$49.95 USD - Hardback
$49.95 USD - Electronic book text