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The Transformation of National Memory in Polish Post-War Cinema
The Transformation of National Memory in Polish Post-War Cinema

Author(s): Magdalena Saryusz-Wolska
Subject(s): Theatre, Dance, Performing Arts
Published by: Editura Universitatii LUCIAN BLAGA din Sibiu
Keywords: Polish cinema; Polish politics of memory; film and memory

Summary/Abstract: The article is aimed to provide an overview of the process of coming to terms with the past in post-war Poland as well as on how filmmakers depicted it. The essay is divided into two parts: (1) a synopsis of the Polish politics of memory after 1945 and (2) a summary of national issues in post-war films. Contrary to the political turning points from the communist era, which had direct impacts on film production, the breakthrough of 1989 had fewer consequences for the representation of national history. It cannot be stressed enough that Polish films provoked debates on historical issues already in the late 1940s. Hence, scholars usually claim that cinema played a crucial role in establishing a critical historical discourse in Poland. More than one third of the post-war films focused on the past, most of them on World War II. By doing so filmmakers often commented metaphorically on the current political situation.

  • Issue Year: 2014
  • Issue No: XI sp
  • Page Range: 201-214
  • Page Count: 14
  • Language: English