Destrukcyjne czy spajające region? Grupy społeczne na średniowiecznym Śląsku w kontekście aktywności politycznej (czwarta ćwierć XII-XV w.)
Destructive or binding for the region? Social groups in Silesia during the Middle Ages, in the context of political activity (the fourth quarter of the 12th century to the 15th century)
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Activities of social groups, which cause relations between the people of a society, constitute a crucial aspect of a given region’s nature. Did the political and social elite of the Oder region area (Nadodrze), in the time from the latter part of the 12th century until the latter part of the 15th century, take intentionally coordinated, mutually agreed upon actions. Or, after being forced by external factors to take such actions, did they continue to coordinate their activities after external factors ceased to be operative. Yet another question is, did the members of this political elite consider in their activities the notion of a unified, territorial unit called “Silesia”? Various political activities of the Nadodrze elite in the Middle Ages makes establishing a unified model of the formation of regional unity unfeasible. Activities undertaken by the dukes maintained the awareness of Silesia’s unity despite their, and their entourage’s, tendencies to focus on the importance of these small duchies. The dukes focused their activities, via conventions and confederations, towards building community awareness, combining thus far separate elites of individual duchies, especially the society of southern and middle part of Nadodrze. Despite the extended cooperation on various issues, which extended beyond the borders of specific duchies, in the latter part of the 14th and early 15th centuries, separatist tendencies were still extant. Silesian society, forged through political activities of its elite was by nature a network, which reacted dynamically to influences from its surroundings. The structure hardened sometimes, although its members valued locality at least as high as their regional identity.
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