This article focuses on the folk notion of authority presented in the talks with poorly educated villagers of Nowy Targ region. Presented material was collected in the course of anthropologic fieldwork conducted in Southern Poland in 1999-2005. The main argument is that talks with the villagers reveal that state authority is perceived by the model of 'good farmer' (master of the house). That is why the most desired authority should be autocratic (sovereign), patriarchal, pastoral, hard-working and traditional. Folk notions and expectations are quite different from contemporary models of state authority, which is institutional, collective, procedural and representative. It seems the folk imaginations of state authority are rather post-traditional than post-socialist, tough the influence of ideology can not be ignored.
Anna Malewska-Szalygin, Uniwersytet Warszawski, Instytut Etnologii i Antropologii Kulturowej, ul. Zurawia 4, 00-503 Warszawa, Poland
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