SACRUM OR PROFANUM? REMARKS IN PASSING ON B. NOSZCZAK'S BOOK (2002) AND A REVIEW OF IT BY A. ABRAMOWICZ (2005)
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In postwar Poland research on the origins of Polish statehood, was of special importance and the 'Program of Research on the Beginnings of the Polish State' was created. Opinions on the political and social conditioning of the 'Program…' have been dramatically different. B. Noszczak's work is a rather inconsistent collection of comments oscillating between extremes of judgment. On one hand, we find enthusiastic remarks on the 'state as influential patron', and the 'golden age of historical sciences'. State patronage ensured funds for archaeological excavations, also in several buildings of sacral nature, and provided opportunities for a publication of the results. Finally, it created the opportunities for initiating new projects and building a broad base of social support for science, the organization of scientific conferences, as well as numerous lectures, meetings and discussions, many of them abroad. A few hundred exhibitions were organized, including some professionally prepared and successful traveling exhibits that met with full appreciation abroad. Contrary to Noszczak's view, the program enjoyed strong social support for its role in uniting the Poles. People aptly manifested their collective preferences by attending in large numbers all kinds of celebrations, exhibitions and talks organized likewise by the Church and the State. International scholarly acclaim of 'Program's' cognitive values only underscored the aptness of choices made then by Polish science. Appreciation abroad was expressed in a series of long-term archaeological research projects initiated not only in Europe. These investigations were accompanied by joint publications, conferences, exhibitions, as well as personal exchange programs and excavation training projects for students. The writers are completely at odds with the positive evaluation of this book presented in A. Abramowicz's review (2005).
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