Jacob Bruno Mikanowski F'11
Dissertation Fellowships in East European Studies 2011
University of California, Berkeley
Paper Empire: Publishers, Writers, and Readers in Poland’s “Gentle Revolution,” 1944-1948
The project is a history of the literary sphere and publishing industry in Poland in the immediate postwar period. It focuses on the role of institutions (publishing houses, literary journals, writer’s unions) in producing a new literary culture, and traces the influence of Communist Party policy on these developments. The project also considers the economic background to these changes. Finally, it tracks government attempts to study and shape popular readership, and charts the response of these readers to new literature and publishing ventures. By understanding the network of publishers, editors, journals, booksellers, and critics that arose in Poland in the postwar period, the project aims to make legible the political and aesthetic choices of individual writers and readers.