I. Stambol The trends of Development of Modern Polish Biography (on the Case Study of «Polish Biographical Studies»)

DOI: 10.20535/2307-5244.52.2021.236170

Kyiv Boris Grinchenko University

In the article, we determined the main tendencies of the development of biography
in Poland in the early 2000’s. In our research, we based on the publication
of the scientific journal «Polish Biographical Studies», published in Szczecin
since 2015 at the Center for Biographical Studies. The main problems raised by
Polish researchers concern the biographies of Polish communists, the military,
the multidisciplinary nature of biography, and the division of humanities into
periods. Articles contained in the publication are divided into groups by topic,
including political, intellectual, collective, female, and separately Jewish biographies.
Also, we noted publications of biographical documents.
It has been found that Polish biographers are mostly interested in the period
of the first two thirds of the twentieth century. In particular, they focus on biographies
of thinkers of the Second Rzeczpospolita, educators, and politicians. In
our study, we noted the discourse on fighting in the anti-German and anti-Soviet
underground. Participation in the church and student organizations, as well as
acquaintance with figures like Jozef Pilsudski or Roman Dmowski are very common
in political biographies. With no exception for Jewish biographies, where
most of the people mentioned as heroes of the uprising and underground movements
in the ghetto. Even though they went to Palestine, they remain «Polish»
in biographical discourse. Also in «Polish Biographical Studies», most biographies
also tend to be political and they “supersede” biographies of engineers,
athletes, or artists.
Comparing the Polish biographical publication with the «Ukrainian Biography
» in 2013–2017, Ukrainians published almost twice as many theoretical
works and biographies of scientists. It included more political and collective biographies
and the same number of source articles. At the same time, there are
more female biographies in the Polish edition, as well as biographies of Jews,
while none in the Ukrainian. This explains that biographies of Polish Jews are
perceived as the property of Polish society by Polish scholars when such identification
almost does not in Ukraine.

Keywords: biography, scientists, political figures, Polish humanities, Polish
Biographical Studies, Ukrainian biography 21st cent.


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