Michnik Attacked: The Polish Culture War Escalates

Late Saturday night, I received an urgent email from Tomek Kitlinski “Bad, disturbing, but important news again,” followed by a brief description of a recent event in Poland and his extended thoughts about its meaning. Here, his report and reflections. -Jeff

February 23, 2013, a lecture by Adam Michnik, the foremost dissident against Communism, author, editor-in-chief of Poland’s leading broadsheet Gazeta Wyborcza and regular contributor to The New York Review of Books, was disrupted by a group of Polish ultranationalists. Michnik is Eastern Europe’s most outstanding public intellectual whose books, articles, and, before 1989, writings from prison have shaped the thinking and acting for freedom in our region. Esprit, erudition and engagement in pro-democracy struggle make him an exceptional social philosopher and activist. As Gazeta reported, on Saturday in the city of Radom a group of young people in balaclavas and masks attempted to disrupt Michnik’s talk and chanted “National Radom! National Radom!” A scuffle erupted. The far-right All Polish Youth militiamen were shouting during the lecture.

The disruption of the Michnik lecture follows a pattern of aggression in Poland and among its neighbors. Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria and Russia are gripped by culture wars, as I have explored here. The Polish cultural war is ongoing.

Recently at the University of Warsaw, neo-Nazis threatened a lecture by the feminist philosopher Magdalena Sroda.”

Întregul articol, aici.

 

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