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W. MARKIEWICZ. Introduction
The agreement between the editorial boards of the journals "Kwartalnik historyczny" and "Voprosy istorii" providing for an exchange of articles testifies to the further extension of cooperation between People's Poland and the Soviet Union in the sphere of the social sciences. Whereas in a number of capitalist countries deliberate attempts are being made to belittle the significance of history in the process of teaching schoolchildren and students, to play down the role of popularizing scientific knowledge and socio-political education, both in Poland and the U.S.S.R. exceptional importance is attached to history because the level of society's political development overwhelmingly depends on the level of historical education. In the period since the establishment of People's Poland one of the most important and durable gains in the political education of the general public, the achievement of which is largely attributable to historical education, has been the shaping of a new political culture, especially among the younger generation of Poles. The articles by the Polish authors representing seven of the most important scientific centres in People's Poland, warrant the conclusion that contemporary Polish historical science has rendered great services in disseminating and imparting the ideas of Marxism- Leninism and socialist patriotism, in deepening the analysis of the historical process; it has at its disposal an extensive network of scientific institutions and large numbers of well-trained research personnel.
J. TOMICKI. The Great October Socialist Revolution and Poland
The Great October Socialist Revolution was of immense significance for the struggle waged by the Polish people for their national and social emancipation. It is a well-known fact that none of the states which owned Polish lands until 1917 (Russia, Austria-Hungary, Prussia) had the slightest intention to settle the Polish question in conformity with the Polish people's striving for independence. The Bolshevik Party guided by Lenin exposed the policy of the tsarist authorities and the Central Powers in this question. The Bolshevik Party's clear-cut programme on the national question found expression in the slogan proclaiming the right of nations to self- determination. In conformity with the Declaration of Rights of the Peoples of Russia, the Soviet government adopted a decree in August 1918 recognizing the Polish people's inalienable right to independence and unity and liquidating the legal foundations underlying the official actions of those powers which had formerly partitioned the Polish lands. There began the process of reestablishing Poland's independence, of reuniting her hitherto partitioned lands in order to convert them into a single organism; the integration processes in the sphere of culture and lifeways proceeded at a faster rate. There is no denying that the Polish people owe their liberation primarily to their indefatigable struggle for independence, but they were able to gain the latter only after the world's first victorious socialist revolution.
A. SKRZYPEK. The Main Stages in the Political and Economic Development of the Polish People's Republic (1944 - 1971)
The author characterizes the principal phases in the socio-economic and political development of People's Poland during the thirty years of its existence. This period is divided by him into four stages. In the first stage (1944 - 1949) the factors of fundamental significance were the conquest of power by the revolutionary forces of society, the consolidation of popular rule and the gradual enlistment of the toiling masses in the work of effecting socialist transformations. Those years were marked by the restoration of the war-ravaged economy and by the great displacements of population, especially in connection with the need to settle and develop the regained lands. In the second stage (1949 - 1956) the chief stress was laid on consummating the process of Poland's industrialization and introducing the principle of planning in the national economy. The formation of the Polish United Workers' Party as the only party of the working class in the country, as well as the drafting and adoption of the Constitution became a reflection of the changes being effected in Poland in those years. The third stage (1956 - 1964) was keynoted by the laying of the foundations of socialism along the whole front. Already in those years the advantages offered by the socialist countries' economic integration became clearly apparent. At the same time there gradually emerged the forms of government by the people, organically connected with the socialist system. In the fourth stage (from 1969 to.the present time) the quantitative changes have been increasingly developing into qualitative changes determining the process of building a developed socialist society in Poland.
W. T. KOWALSKI. Poland's Alliance with the Soviet Union
The article is devoted to the genesis of the Polish-Soviet alliance. Its starting points are the experience of the policy pursued by Poland in the period between the wars, its verification carried out in the war years by Poland's revolutionary forces and, primarily, by the Polish Workers' Party, as well as the principles of the Soviet Union's policy in relation to Poland, formulated in the period of building up the anti-Hitler coalition. The author describes the struggle of Soviet diplomacy for the re-establishment of a strong, free and independent Poland, for restoring her frontiers along the banks of the Odra and the Nysa Luzycka rivers.
Of momentous significance for relations between Poland and the U.S.S.R. was the emergence of popular rule, which realized the aims and tasks formulated by the revolutionary forces of Polish society. The author characterizes the initial Polish-Soviet agreements, emphasizing special significance of the Polish-Soviet Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance of April 21, 1945, in strengthening Poland's international positions, notably in solving the question of delineating her Western frontiers. In April 1965 this Treaty, which provides the basis for all- round cooperation between Poland and the U.S.S.R. in all spheres, was prolonged for another twenty years.
CZ. MADAJCZYK. Poland's Contribution to the Victory Over Fascism
The article highlights Poland's contribution to the victory over fascism. The Polish people's struggle against fascist aggression began way back in the years preceding the war. This found expression, specifically, in the Poles' active participation in the defence of republican Spain. Poland became the first victim of the nazi aggression. The heavy sacrifices made in the course of the war and in the years of nazi occupation gave Poland the right to take part in the solution of Europe's postwar problems. Characterizing Poland's contribution to the victory over fascism, the author emphatically stresses that the question concerns a country which in the course of several years was subjected by the nazi invaders to barbarous destruction and extermination of human lives on a scale that can be compared only with the criminal actions perpetrated by the nazis on the occupied territories of the U.S.S.R. and in Yugoslavia. Chief attention is devoted in the article to Poland's contribution to the military victory over fascism. Parallel with the Re-
sistance movement the author characterizes the Poles' participation in battles fought on the various fronts of the Second World War, as well as the economic contribution made by Poland-a country bled white by the prolonged occupation and the nazi plunder-to the cause of victory over fascism. As regards the size of the military forces involved, Poland held first place after the Great Powers of the anti-Hitler coalition. As a member of this coalition,Poland also influenced the process of the postwar settlement in Europe
S. KALABINSKI. The Historic Role of the Polish Working Class and the Study of Its History
The author sheds light on the conception of studying the history of the Polish working class, which forms the underlying basis of research works produced by the Laboratory of Research in the History of the Working Class at the Institute of History of the Polish Academy of Sciences. This conception proceeds from the premise that a clear understanding of the role played by the working class in the history of Poland must become an integral part of the view on the Polish historical process in the. 19th - 20th centuries This presupposes a considerable expansion of existing source facilities and further improvement of research methods. The starting point of an extensive research programme consists in defining the economic prerequisites which determine the rise and development of the working class. Other subjects concern the genesis of the composition and social structure of the working class, the quantitative changes occurring in it and their dynamics, the workers' political, juridical and material position. The next sections of the programme are devoted to the problems of culture as the sum total of the material and spiritual life of the proletariat. The concluding section deals with the socio-political activity of the working class. The fulfilment of this research programme, in the author's opinion, will permit to disclose the mechanism of social life, to trace the emergence of distinct trends and dynamics of social changes, to study the sources of socio-political, ideological and cultural currents, and, above all, the working-class movement.
H. BRODOWSKA. The Place Held by the Peasants in the Class and National Structure of the 19th - 20th Centuries
Notwithstanding their quantitative predominance, the peasants comprised the lowest segment of the population in Poland's class structure. The article graphically shows the process of the gradual decrease in the number of peasants during the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries in all three parts of partitioned Poland as a result of emigration and industrial development, notably in the Kingdom of Poland, Silesia and Cieszyn district. The process of the outflow of population from the countryside and the influx of reimmigrants, which decelerated during the first world war, caused a new increase in the number of peasants. The stagnation in industry and the slowing down of emigration brought about an increase in the number of "redundant people" in the countryside and aggravated the land hunger in Poland in the period between the wars. Far more complicated was the situation caused by the changes in the peasant environment engendered by the peasant reforms, capitalist differentiation in the countryside and the policy of the partitioning powers. The author characterizes the differentiation of the peasant farmholds, the specific features of their development in each of the three parts of divided Poland, the social and political activity of the peasants, particularly during the Revolution of 1905 - 1907, the corporative movement, the clandestine activity in the field of national education and enlightenment, the struggle against the administrative authorities and the landlords. In the twenty-year period between the wars there crystallized in the peasant movement both the conservative tendency and the process of radicalization as a result of the struggle for an agrarian reform and for civil rights. When, during the first decade of Poland's existence in the period between the wars, the Ludowites' participation in administering the country was lost with the seizure of power by the Sanacja clique, the Ludowite movement took the road of struggle against the ruling element. Its ties with the working class were growing stronger and consistent efforts were being made to build up an alliance of workers and peasants. The subsequent period witnessed the peasants' mass
participation in the struggle against the nazi aggression and in the Resistance movement, as well as in the agrarian reform carried out by the people's government, which liquidated the landowning class in Poland. At that period the proportion of the peasants in the aggregate population of the country registered another increase.
R. WAPINSKI. 19th - and 20th-century Political Movements in Poland
The lag in the development of bourgeois relations as compared with the countries of Western Europe, the absence of a national state, the existing gap between the political and economic unity of the Polish lands-these are only some of the causes which hampered the development of political life on these lands in the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century. Among other contributing factors the author notes the consequences following from the defeat of the uprising of 1863 - 1864 and the preclusion of any possibility to engage in legal political activity in tsarist Russia, which incorporated a sizable proportion of the Polish lands. The steady growth of the industrial proletariat, the heightened social activity of the generation which grew up in the post- insurrectionary and post-Reform period, as well as the mounting contradictions between the three powers which partitioned Poland-all these factors created more favourable conditions for the appearance of the main political trends in Poland. The most important landmark in this respect was the emergence in 1882 of a social-revolutionary party called "The Proletariat." The period between '1892 and 1895 witnessed the formation of social-democracy of the Kingdom of Poland, the Polish Socialist Party, the Stronnictwo Ludowe (in Galicia) and the National League. Of first-rate significance was the Revolution of 1905 - 1907, especially for the development of political movement in the Kingdom of Poland. A qualitatively new stage in the history of these movements was ushered in by the re-establishment of Poland's independence in 1918, which provided more favourable conditions for the development of political life, for heightening the activity of the various political parties, for the gradual elimination of regional disunity and unification of political movements, and contributed to more distinct polarization of the social and political forces.
J LESKIEWICZOWA. The Society of the Kingdom of Poland (1815 - 1864) in the Light of Contemporary Research
The years 1815 - 1864 in the history of the Kingdom of Poland constitute a period marked by the weakening of the old feudal social-estate distinctions and, despite the continued existence of a system of economy based on the corvee, by the appearance of new class divisions in agriculture. A close study of individual human destinies, carried out on a mass scale, permitted to reveal the durability of the foundations of feudalism. The traditional conception of the gentry was enhanced by legislation enacted by the tsarist authorities in the thirties of the 19th century, although the process of differentiation among the gentry breached the homogeneity of this social estate. The feudal imposts and duties coupled with the absence of education continued to bind the peasants to the countryside. Only the mass of landless population, side by side with the non-numerous group of peasants owning allotments and the more numerous group of tenant farmers, were able to rid themselves of their dependence on the landlord. The development of the economy, which was accompanied by the growth of culture (although the latter was still embracing comparatively small sections of the population), was gradually leading to ever more distinct crystallization of new classes. The aloofness of the intelligentsia - a social stratum typical of the countries lagging behind in capitalist development-became especially cleanly apparent. The bourgeoisie-not numerous and often alien (in national respect)-was poorly integrated with the rest of the population; and the workers were still strongly connected either with the peasant environment or with the city plebs and the petty bourgeoisie, from which they hailed or in whose midst they lived.
B. LESNODORSKI. Some Ideological Motifs in the Culture of the Polish Enlightenment
The Enlightenment in Poland began to take shape in the forties of the 18th century; the period of its maturity lasted from the 1760's to the 1790's. It did not disappear after the third partition of the Rzecz Pospolita (1795), continuing through the first two decades
of the 19th century, although it did not embrace in equal measure all Polish lands. The Polish Enlightenment was not ideologically homogeneous. In different class circles its main ideas manifested themselves in a different way: from being interpreted in the nature of a compromise to their revolutionary conception at the close of the 18th century. The more educated groups of the gentry and the magnates aspired, in the struggle against Sarmatism, the "golden freedom" ideology and the magnates' oligarchy, to refurbish gentry democracy of the old type under republican slogans or. to establish constitutional monarchy in alliance with the King and with the consent of the townsmen. The most conspicuous part in this respect was played by Hugo Kollataj - the ideologist of a compromise between the gentry and the lower middle class, who saw in the Constitution of May 3, 1791, merely the first stage of more profound transformations of the existing system, connected with the development of the national economy and culture. Revolutionary ideas were put forward by the so-called Polish Jacobins, who sought in the course of the 1794 insurrection to effect more far-reaching social changes, first and foremost to liberate the peasants from the bonds of feudal dependence and to provide them with land. The first two decades of the 19th century witnessed the continuation of many ideas of the Enlightenment, particularly the striving to establish a liberal constitutional monarchy within the framework of the Duchy of Warsaw and the Kingdom of Poland.
J. A. GIEROWSKI. Poland's Position Among the European States in the 16th-18th Centuries
The position of Poland among the European states in the 16th-18th centuries was determined not so much by the influence she exercised on international relations as by the creation of original state models during that period. The first of these grew out of a limited monarchy in the 16th century, but secured freedom for the gentry, albeit very numerous. The sphere of power wielded by the monarch in the gentry-ridden Rzecz Pospolita was considerably limited by establishing a Sejm consisting of representatives of the gentry, which exercised legislative powers and controlled the actions of the King. The introduction of this state model in Poland facilitated the achievement of her union with the Grand Principality of Lithuania and enabled the Polish- Lithuanian Rzecz Pospolita to advance to a leading place in the Eastern part of Central Europe at the turn of the 17th century. Nevertheless, the gentry-dominated Rzecz Pospolita was able to march in step with other European powers only for a century. Stagnation in state development, disintegration of the Sejm and the decentralization of power were leading the country towards anarchy, whereas in the neighbouring countries the monarchical power was steadily gaining in strength and the tendency towards greater centralization became more pronounced. The repeated attempts to introduce reforms ended in failure or were confined to halfhearted decisions. Fundamental changes were effected only by the Four Years' Sejm (1788 - 1792). It introduced a new model of state representing the development of the 16th-century model, with certain adjustments to meet the requirements of the 18th century. There occurred a breach in the system of exclusive privileges enjoyed by the gentry; a considerable proportion of the townspeople was granted the same rights. However, the subsequent Partitions of Poland prevented full realization of the new model of Rzecz Pospolita.
W. CZAPLINSKI. Poland: The King and the Sejm in the 16th-17th Centuries
In the opinion of some law theoreticians and historians, the power wielded by the King of Poland in the 16th - 17th centuries was weak, and the Sejm - the highest legislative body in the country- operated with little effect. However, more conscientious research brings us to the conclusion that those who maintained that the power of the King of Poland had not been as weak by far as was generally believed are much closer to the truth. The King had the right to appoint officials; his incomes, while not too large, were not too small either; and last but not least, he was in a position to influence the decisions adopted by the Sejm. The weak sides of the latter was its convocation once every two years, with an entirely new composition of deputies each time, as well as the principle of the unanimity in adopting decisions. At the same time it was quite possible to convene the Sejm more frequently, the benches in the Sejm were occupied by deputies with a long
record of parliamentary service, and, lastly, the principle of the unanimity was not always observed in the early period. In the second half of the 16th and the first half of the 17th centuries the vast majority of the Sejm meetings ended in the adoption of the necessary decisions; non- acceptance of one or another legislative bill could by no means be interpreted as an act completely nullifying the entire work of the Sejm. Another important factor was this: in spite of the fact that only the gentry was represented in the Sejm, it should be noted, first, that it was comparatively numerous, and, second, that it consisted both of rich noblemen and representatives of the poorest gentry.
J. TAZBIR. The Polish Gentry's Way of Life and Mode of Thinking
The article draws the readers' attention to such typical features of the Polish gentry's culture as their hostile attitude to big cities and glorification of the rural way of life. Their ideal was the owner of a small estate who limits his desires by that which he has and does not seek any personal advantage or success. The gentry's way of life permitted to engage in agricultural labour (owing to the existence of vast numbers of the lesser gentry who were able to support themselves and their families by such labour), while of the so-called free professions only the occupation of the lawyer was valued. Side by side with a purely utilitarian approach to life, an essential feature of gentry morals were also complex rules of behaviour. Representatives of the gentry were distinguished by a highly developed sense of personal dignity and a peculiar ethical code. This, however, should not be taken to mean that the lofty ideals of chivalrous ethics were realized in practice. The sphere of ethics was dominated by dualism: the demands made on the gentry were quite different from those made on the common people. The gentry's way of life, clothes and entertainments served as a model for the other social strata (particularly the townspeople). With the progressive disintegration of feudal society the gentry's moral? became an obstacle barring the road to the renewal of the country.
M. BISKUP. Poland's Position in the Baltic in the 16th Century
The author sums up the results of research in the policy pursued in the Baltic by the Rzecz Pospolita in the 16th century. This policy was based on Poland's economic ties with West- European countries, maintained primarily through Gdansk. Contacts with this seaport became an indispensable factor of the country's economic development, beneficial, though, only to the ruling element (the magnates and the gentry). The Polish gentry exerted every effort to secure for itself a profitable trade through Gdansk, but was opposed to any enhancement of the power of the King at a time when the country was entering the period of establishing "democracy for the gentry." Poland could maintain reliable ties with the Baltic only by limiting the independence of the feudatory (since 1466) German Order and by curtailing the autonomous rights enjoyed by royal Prussia, as well as the privileges of Gdansk. The secularization of ecclesiastical Prussia in 1525, the abolition of the German Order and the establishment in its place of the secular fief of Hohenzollerns-princely Prussia, sealed by the Cracow Treaty of 1525, became a guarantee of Poland's interests in the Baltic. The article touches on the attempts to bring about a rapprochement between princely Prussia and the lands of the Polish Crown with the support of the Prussian nobility. These actions found expression in the decisions adopted by the Lublin Sejm of 1569. The opposition of Gdansk to this policy led in 1568 to the institution of a Naval Commission-Poland's first Admiralty and Navy Department, the. building of the first Polish warship in Elblag and curtailment of the rights enjoyed by Gdansk. The Livonian war and Stephen Bathory's anti-Turkish policy led to the lifting of these restrictions. On the whole, the struggle for Livonia played a negative role in solving the question of Poland's northwestern lands, including feudatory princely Prussia, which passed into the hands of the Brandenburg lineage of Hohenzollerns.
H. LOWMIANSKI. The Origin of the Slavonic States
The process of the emergence of states among the Slavs began in the latter half of the 8th century. The lag of this process should be attributed to the historic destinies and geographical position of the Slavs. The impulse to create the foundations of statehood
was given the Slavs by the neighbouring steppe peoples (the Avars, Bulgars, Khazars) as well as by some of the states succeeding to the Roman Empire. However, elements for their state system were drawn by the Slavs primarily from their own tribal organization, bringing its institutions (territorial division, the financial system, military and judicial organization) into conformity with the new requirements. The tribal assembly was abolished and the old tribal institutions came under the jurisdiction of the prince; the supreme right to the land passed from the tribe to the prince. The payments that flowed into the Treasury acquired the character of feudal rent. In the subsequent stage the prince began to allot the land to the churches and the magnates, developing private feudal ownership in this way. In the concluding part of the article the author examines the history of the formation of individual Slavonic states. Their basis was formed by groups of tribes closely connected with each other by ties of neighbourship, the community of historic destinies and the proximity of culture. The first states arose on the southern fringes of Slavdom, whence the model of state organization was borrowed by other Slav neighbours. The Slavonic states which appeared in the 8th - 10th centuries continue to exist to this day, thus furnishing a convincing proof of the fundamental significance of the changes that occurred in the social system of the Slavic tribes during that period.
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