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Icke helt och hållet skall jag dö: Den "judiska frågan" i Polen
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures.
2012 (Swedish)Book (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

My study Icke helt och hållet skall jag dö. Den ”judiska frågan” i Polen (Not Entirely Shall I Die.  The “Jewish Question” in Poland) discusses how the “Jewish question” has been framed and transmitted in the Polish discourse from the turn of the eighteenth century to modern times. To show how these phenomena have been treated in historiography and reflected both in the Polish intelligentsia’s discussion of the issue in journalistic and culturological works and in a number of literary texts, I focus above all on transcendent historical events and ideological turning points. The opening chapter on the role and significance of the Jews in early Poland serves as a prelude to the subsequent nineteenth-century debate leading up to the increasingly virulent anti-Semitism and anti-Judaism of the interwar period. This is followed by an account of relations between Poles and Jews and the fate of children during the Holocaust as portrayed in witness narratives and other materials. An account of the aftermath of the genocide as manifested in the pogroms in Kraków and Kielce in 1945 and 1946, respectively, is complemented with a survey of the discussion of these events within the intelligentsia.

The study concludes with an analysis of the debate on the relationship between Poles and Jews that erupted in 1987 in the wake of the prominent literary scholar Jan Błoński’s now classic essay “The Poor Poles Look at the Ghetto” inspired by one of Czesław Miłosz’s poems on the Holocaust. This discussion for the first time introduced an ethical dimension into Polish attitudes toward the Holocaust and the question Miłosz raised about the responsibility borne by Christians for the genocide. The issue was brought to a head in Jan T. Gross’s Fear. Anti-Semitism in Poland Immediately After the War. A Story of Moral Collapse, which ignited a heated debate that is addressed in the final chapter. An afterword presents a survey of recent historiography that includes documentation of the attitudes of the rural population toward the Jews during the final phase of the Holocaust.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Carlsson Bokförlag, 2012. , 494 p.
National Category
Research subject
History of Ideas
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-84712ISBN: 978-91-7331-525-8OAI: diva2:581289
Available from: 2012-12-30 Created: 2012-12-30 Last updated: 2013-08-20Bibliographically approved

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Ingdahl, Kazimiera
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