By David Ost
In accordance with large use of fundamental resources, this booklet offers an research of harmony, from its ideological origins within the Polish "new left," throughout the dramatic progressive months of 1980-81, and up-to the union's extraordinary resurgence in 1988-89, whilst it sat down with the govt. to barter Poland's destiny. David Ost makes a speciality of what cohesion is attempting to complete and why it's most probably that the circulation will be triumphant. He strains the clash among the ruling Communist get together and the competition, Solidarity's reaction to it, and the ensuing reforms. Noting that Poland is the only kingdom on this planet the place "radicals of '68" got here to be capable of negotiate with a central authority concerning the nature of the political process, Ost asks what Poland tells us concerning the probability for knowing a "new left" idea of democracy within the glossy world.As a Fulbright Fellow at Warsaw college and varnish correspondent for the weekly newspaper "In those instances" in the course of the cohesion rebellion and a common customer to Poland in view that then, David Ost has had entry to loads of unpublished fabric at the exertions circulation. with out living at the typical heritage of August 1980, he deals a number of the surprising subtleties comparable to the importance of the Szczecin in place of the Gdansk Accord and exhibits how they formed the budding union's figuring out of the conflicts forward. exact in its cognizance to the serious, formative interval following August 1980, this learn is the most up-tp-date and accomplished research of a flow that maintains to remodel the character of East eu society. David Ost is Assistant Professor of Political technology at Hobart and William Smith faculties and the translator of "The Church and the Left: A conversation" through Adam Michnik.
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Additional resources for Solidarity and the Politics of Anti-Politics: Opposition and Reform in Poland since 1968 (Labor And Social Change)
Julian Hochfeld, a former leader of the PPS, denounced the impotence of the parliament (Sejm) and called for a revitalized and more independent Sejm, freely elected and subject to recall. IS Oskar Lange, the internationally known economist and a member of the PZPR Central Committee, publicly re-embraced his social democratic past with a call for greater democratization and a drastic reduction of the prerogatives of the central planners. 19 The ideals of social democracy were sneaking into public discourse.
So it is not surprising that an original left theory and practice developed there much better than they did anywhere else. What made this left so original was that it had given up all the utopias radicals so often cling to. It might best be called a postmodern left. This is a left past the age of innocence, past the utopias and the simple solutions. It knows that left traditions have been hopelessly compromised, but seeks to salvage something anyway. 26 This postmodern left thus rediscovered the concept of civil society long after the left had discarded it (for reasons discussed in Chapter Two).
To understand Solidarity, its underlying political theory and its goals, we need to understand the Marxist and Leninist approach to civil society. But this can best be understood by contrasting it with the relationship of capitalism to civil society. Insofar as "civil society" refers to the public space where citizens communicate and interact on the basis of their various particular interests, the concept assumes that citizens have legitimate particular interests. Citizens have interests as businesspeople or industrialists, as laborers or students, as intellectuals or farmers, as journalists or steelworkers.