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2010 | 45 | 123-139

Article title

JULIAN BRUN - A CRITICAL SKETCH TO A PORTRAIT OF A COMMUNIST (Julian Brun - krytyczny szkic do portretu komunisty)

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Julian Brun, (1986-1942), publicist, literary critic, historian, communist. He was connected with communist circles in his middle school years, then he was a member of SDK PiL, and finally of KPP and the structures of the third International (Komintern). Julian Bruno-s biography is full of questionable and ambiguous facts. These relate to his activity and position in the Komintern structures as well as his connections with Russian politicians and diplomats, the problem of Polish communists. These may be resolved after gaining access to Russian documents. From the preserved Polish documentation emerges a person completely entangled in ideology, losing the sense of reality, serving the USSR . It seems rather striking, considering the fact that Brun was engaged in international activity, he knew Western Europe perfectly. He was also aware of the realities of the USSR ; he had spent many years there. And although, on the ideological level, the communists treated the USSR as their homeland, still, a strong Polish homeland motif is prevalent in his writing. For him, Polish history and its present time evidently carried the burden of Marxism and remained in close affiliation with Moscow. As one of the few communists, apart from Julian Marchlewski, he wrote about Polish history separately. In the process of Polish nation formation, he acknowledged the role of Polish intelligence and aristocracy. Brun is a figure with intelligentsia and insurgent background, so deeply entangled in communist ideology that he decided to stand against his own country. An educated communist, with international connections, a researcher in nature, but with archaic in the present day, and almost shocking attitude of a loyal communist in the service of the USSR . The bibliography of his works comprises about 200 entries. Despite the controversy that it may arouse, his publication of 1926 of Stefan Zeromski's Tragedy of Errors, though written in Marxist as well as probolshevik stream, is probably his best work. There he demonstrated a good amount of independent thinking; he undeniably paid homage not only to Zeromski, but also other independence activists of the 19th century. After his departure to the USSR in 1926, the motif of Polish nation could still be visible in his journalism, however, soviet propaganda, to which he succumbed entirely, dominated. And despite the fact that the problem of revolution, one of the most prominent in 19th and 20th century, through reference to, among others, Tocquevill-s works, puts him on a par with the theorists of the revolution phenomenon, today, his deliberations do not present any scientific value. Still, Brun as a figure, his activity as well as his journalism, is significant for the studies on Komintern, the USSR , but also the history of Poland. Brun was a good hero for the PRL propagators. On his 10th death anniversary in 1952, the Presidium of the Board of Polish Journalists Association named after him the Journalists House in Warsaw on Foksal Street. A Julian Brun's annual prize for young journalists was also founded.








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  • Malgorzata Gmurczyk-Wronska, Instytut Historii im. Tadeusza Manteuffla PAN, Rynek Starego Miasta 29/31, 00-272 Warszawa, Poland


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Publication order reference


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