Artists Remake the World
The Series

The Series : « Hurrahs and Turmoils »

This texts are the result of from the book Hourras et désarrois. [Hurrahs and Turmoils] Scenes of a Cultural War in Poland published on 16 May 2019 by Éditions Noir sur Blanc (Lausanne) edited by Agnieszka Żuk.

What is the root of the political events which are today shaking Polish society and echoing across Europe: refusal to accept migrants, a proposed historical memory law on the Shoah, introduction of laws which affect the independence of the judiciary or the attempt to totally ban IVF, to name but the most widely publicised issues? And finally, how does one explain the causes of the anti-European volte-face which the “European Union’s best student” has performed?

The aim of this collective work is to bring an in-depth, nuanced and intimate view of contemporary Poland, through its culture, understood here to mean the entirety of ways of thinking, feeling and acting specific to a given society. Current events of recent years appear here within a complex network of narratives and historical omissions, traumas and pressures; they are confronted with existing cultural models, immersed in the collective imagination, defused by humour or distorted by stereotypes.

The authors include: Agata Adamiecka, Przemysław Czapliński, Olga Drenda, Agnieszka Graff, Mikołaj Grynberg, Maciej Jakubowiak, Dariusz Kosiński, Iwona Kurz, Andrzej Leder, Jan Sowa, Aleksandra Małecka, Piotr Marecki, Karol Sienkiewicz, Kaja Puto, Maja Staśko, Stach Szabłowski, Ziemowit Szczerek and Oksana Zabuzko.

 

The Author

The Author : Agnieszka Graff

Biography

Agnieszka Graff is senior lecturer at the Centre of American Studies at the University of Warsaw, member of the Congress of Polish Women and co-founder of the feminist organisation “Porozumienie Kobiet 8 Marca.” Author of several books, essays and articles on women’s rights and gender in Polish public discourse, as well as many articles on feminist thought, she is currently working with the sociologist Elżbieta Korolczuk on a book on international activism against gender theory and the links of such opposition with right-wing populism.

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The texts come from the book Hourras et désarrois. Scènes d’une guerre culturelle en Pologne (Hurrahs and Turmoils. Scenes of a Cultural War in Poland) edited by Agnieszka Żuk and published on 16 May 2019 by Éditions Noir sur Blanc (Lausanne).

What is the root of the political events which are today shaking Polish society and echoing across Europe: refusal to accept migrants, the proposed memory law relating to the Shoah, the introduction of laws which affect the independence of the judiciary, or the attempt at an outright ban on IVF, to name only the most widely publicised issues? Furthermore, how does one explain the causes of the anti-European volte-face of ‘the European Union’s best student’?

The aim of this collective work is to introduce an in-depth, nuanced and intimate view of contemporary Poland through its culture, understood here as ways of thinking, feeling and acting that are specific to a given society. The events of recent years appear here within a complex network of narratives and historical omissions, traumas and pressures; they are confronted with existing cultural models, immersed in the collective imagination, defused by humour or distorted by stereotypes.

The authors include Agata Adamiecka, Przemysław Czapliński, Olga Drenda, Agnieszka Graff, Mikołaj Grynberg, Maciej Jakubowiak, Dariusz Kosiński, Iwona Kurz, Andrzej Leder, Jan Sowa, Aleksandra Małecka, Piotr Marecki, Karol Sienkiewicz, Kaja Puto, Maja Staśko, Stach Szabłowski, Ziemowit Szczerek and Oksana Zabuzko.

Agnieszka Żuk is a literary translator. She has translated Andrzej Stasiuk, Krzysztof Varga, Mariusz Wilk and Justyna Bargielska. In 2016, she edited the anthology of Polish literature Venice/Warsaw published by MEET (Maison des Écrivains Étrangers et des Traducteurs). Heavily involved in promoting Polish culture, she has helped to organise MEET international literary meetings. Former editorial consultant for the magazine Feuilleton. A lecturer in Polish, she has taught Polish language and literature at the universities of Nancy II and Paris IV-Sorbonne.

Around the text
Investigation by Agnieszka Graff
20 August 2020

You are not alone!
The Birth of “Grassroots Feminism” in Poland

Investigation by Agnieszka Graff

Under slogans such as “Militant Polish woman“or “The Polish woman is not yet lost”, and in particular actions and works of art that are strongly provocative, women artists are hijacking patriotic symbols in order to expose their chauvinist and sexist nature, and to assert their rights in the public debate. Who are the leading figures in this “grassroots feminism”?

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