This seminar looks at the role of Communist intellectuals and politicians in post-1945 Poland, focusing on the case of Władysław Bieńkowski (1905–1991), who was one of the closest associates of Władysław Gomułka (1905–1982), the leader of the Polish United Workers’ Party (the Communist party) until December1970. Bieńkowski in his role overseeing propaganda and education played a major role in the establishment of Communist rule in Poland and then served as a key aide to Gomułka after 1956. But by the late 1950s Bieńkowski had become increasingly disillusioned with Communism. In the 1970s, he supported the democratic opposition (Workers’ Defense Committee) and also became a strong supporter of Solidarity.
Refreshments will be provided.
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