Almost thirty years since the collapse of the socialist system in Eastern Europe, anticommunism is one of the key political discourses in Poland. It manifests itself in Polish legislation, and is pervasive in the social sciences. It also influences public history, everyday political life, as well as pop culture. The anticommunist consensus is shared by all socially relevant forces, including most of the left. Polish anticommunism takes different, partly contradictory, forms: from opposition to Marxism and classical theorists of communism, to over-simplified critique of the People’s Republic of Poland, to general rejection of left and partly even liberal ideas. In my work I analyse the functioning of the discursive dominance of anticommunism in the Third Republic, which has not been done systematically so far. The thesis adopts an interdisciplinary approach, drawing on the “hegemony analysis” developed by Martin Nonhoff, which is based on the post-Marxist discourse theory of Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe, as well as selected concepts from the field of “politics of history” (Geschichtspolitik). My dissertation contributes to the expansion of the research area in terms of space, time, and methodology. It also offers a starting point for further studies on the current social and political developments in Poland, such as the rapid downfall of the left.
Biographical data: Michalina Golinczak has been a PhD student at the Center for Interdiciplinary Polish Studies at the European University Viadrina since October 2017. She studied Cultural Studies at the University of Wrocław.
Faculty: Social and Cultural Sciences
Supervisor: Prof. Dagmara Jajeśniak-Quast