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Crosses of Auschwitz (06 Edition)

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Synopses & Reviews

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Publisher Comments:

In the summer and fall of 1998, ultranationalist Polish Catholics erected hundreds of crosses outside Auschwitz, setting off a fierce debate that pitted Catholics and Jews against one another. While this controversy had ramifications that extended well beyond Polands borders, Geneviève Zubrzycki sees it as a particularly crucial moment in the development of post-Communist Polands statehood and its changing relationship to Catholicism.

In The Crosses of Auschwitz, Zubrzycki skillfully demonstrates how this episode crystallized latent social conflicts regarding the significance of Catholicism in defining “Polishness” and the role of anti-Semitism in the construction of a new Polish identity. Since the fall of Communism, the binding that has held Polish identity and Catholicism together has begun to erode, creating unease among ultranationalists. Within their construction of Polish identity also exists pride in the Polish peoples long history of suffering. For the ultranationalists, then, the crosses at Auschwitz were not only symbols of their ethno-Catholic vision, but also an attempt to lay claim to what they perceived was a Jewish monopoly over martyrdom.

This gripping account of the emotional and aesthetic aspects of the scene of the crosses at Auschwitz offers profound insights into what Polishness is today and what it may become.

Synopsis:

In the summer and fall of 1998, ultranationalist Polish Catholics erected hundreds of crosses outside Auschwitz, setting off a fierce debate that pitted Catholics and Jews against one another. While this controversy had ramifications that extended well beyond Polands borders, Geneviève Zubrzycki sees it as a particularly crucial moment in the development of post-Communist Polands statehood and its changing relationship to Catholicism.

In The Crosses of Auschwitz, Zubrzycki skillfully demonstrates how this episode crystallized latent social conflicts regarding the significance of Catholicism in defining “Polishness” and the role of anti-Semitism in the construction of a new Polish identity. Since the fall of Communism, the binding that has held Polish identity and Catholicism together has begun to erode, creating unease among ultranationalists. Within their construction of Polish identity also exists pride in the Polish peoples long history of suffering. For the ultranationalists, then, the crosses at Auschwitz were not only symbols of their ethno-Catholic vision, but also an attempt to lay claim to what they perceived was a Jewish monopoly over martyrdom.

This gripping account of the emotional and aesthetic aspects of the scene of the crosses at Auschwitz offers profound insights into what Polishness is today and what it may become.

About the Author

Geneviève Zubrzycki is assistant professor of sociology at the University of Michigan.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

Preface 

Acknowledgments

Abbreviations

Key to Pronunciation

Introduction and Theoretical Orientations

1. Genealogy of Polish Nationalism 

2. "We, the Polish Nation": Redefining the Nation in Post-Communist Poland

3. "Oswiecim"/"Auschwitz": Archaeology of a Contested Site and Symbol 

4. The Aesthetics of the War of the Crosses: Mobilizing "the Nation"

5. Debating Poland by Debating the Cross

Conclusion: Nationalism and Religion Reexamined 

Appendix A: Newspapers Consulted  

Appendix B: Preamble to the Constitution of the Third Republic of Poland

Appendix C: Historical Cues 

References 

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780226993041
Subtitle:
Nationalism and Religion in Post-Communist Poland
Author:
Zubrzycki
Author:
Zubrzycki, Genevieve
Author:
&
Author:
egrave
Author:
Genevi
Author:
Zubrzycki, Genevi
Author:
E V
Author:
ve Zubrzycki
Publisher:
University Of Chicago Press
Subject:
Eastern Europe - Poland
Subject:
Nationalism
Subject:
Post-communism
Subject:
Political Ideologies - Nationalism
Subject:
SOC039000
Subject:
Auschwitz (Concentration camp)
Subject:
National characteristics, polish
Subject:
Politics - General
Subject:
Politics-Leftist Studies
Edition Description:
Paperback
Publication Date:
20060915
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
Professional and scholarly
Language:
English
Illustrations:
39 halftones, 1 map, 5 tables
Pages:
280
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Europe » Eastern Europe » Poland
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » Leftist Studies
Religion » Western Religions » Social and Political Issues

Crosses of Auschwitz (06 Edition) Used Trade Paper
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Product details 280 pages University of Chicago Press - English 9780226993041 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,

In the summer and fall of 1998, ultranationalist Polish Catholics erected hundreds of crosses outside Auschwitz, setting off a fierce debate that pitted Catholics and Jews against one another. While this controversy had ramifications that extended well beyond Polands borders, Geneviève Zubrzycki sees it as a particularly crucial moment in the development of post-Communist Polands statehood and its changing relationship to Catholicism.

In The Crosses of Auschwitz, Zubrzycki skillfully demonstrates how this episode crystallized latent social conflicts regarding the significance of Catholicism in defining “Polishness” and the role of anti-Semitism in the construction of a new Polish identity. Since the fall of Communism, the binding that has held Polish identity and Catholicism together has begun to erode, creating unease among ultranationalists. Within their construction of Polish identity also exists pride in the Polish peoples long history of suffering. For the ultranationalists, then, the crosses at Auschwitz were not only symbols of their ethno-Catholic vision, but also an attempt to lay claim to what they perceived was a Jewish monopoly over martyrdom.

This gripping account of the emotional and aesthetic aspects of the scene of the crosses at Auschwitz offers profound insights into what Polishness is today and what it may become.

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