A 'LAMPOON ON SOCIAL-REALISM'? ON ALEKSANDER WAT'S 'ANTYZOIL'
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Aleksander Wat's broad article entitled 'Antyzoil or recollection in conclusion of the year' published in February 1948 was misapprehended, shadowed with a legend by the author, and accepted by literary scholars as a 'lampoon on social-realism'. Under careful scrutiny, it proves a convoluted and ambiguous text in which the polemics with the postulate of realism formulated around the Marxist 'Kuznica' (Forge) leads to the praise of literature growing up from explicit ideological choices, and surprising from Wat's perspective acceptance of political changes in post-war Poland is linked with declarations of trust in free development of literature in such conditions. Ambiguity of 'Antyzoil' sheds light on the intellectual and moralizing aspirations of the author and on the paradoxes that the literary figures of the second part of the 1940s faced, when the monopolist power was strengthened by the Communist, though in literature a relatively liberal slogan of 'smooth revolution' was still in presence.
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