Działalność Towarzystwa Szwedzko-Polskiego na tle propagandy antypolskiej w Szwecji w okresie międzywojennym
The activity of the Swedish-Polish association as against the anti-Polish propaganda in Sweden in the interwar period
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The aim of the article is to show the origin and activity of the Swedish-Polish association as compared to the deep-rooted anti-Polish propaganda in Sweden in the interwar period. In the first years after World War I the anti-Polish propaganda increased considerably. Poland was considered a temporary state, which made Swedish investors increasingly unwilling to invest their capital in Poland – the country which was rising to life. The negative attitude towards Poland was reflected in press commentaries and utterances made by Swedish politicians. Many of them, including the leader of the Swedish social democracy and Prime Minister of Sweden Hjalmar Branting, criticized heavily Polish territorial claims. The Polish party was aware of how Poland was perceived by Swedish society. However a difficult financial situation of the Polish envoys in Stockholm restricted their propaganda possibilities. The breakthrough came in 1924 with the appointment of Alfred Wysocki to the position of the diplomatic representative of Poland. Thanks to him cooperation with a large group of Swedish citizens started. The group included politicians, artists and scientists such as Nils Wohlin, Marika Stiernstedt, Anton Nyström, Erik Nylander, Torsten Kreuger and Karl Gustaw Fellenius. The effect of this cooperation was the creation of the Swedish-Polish Association in February 1926. Celebrations commemorating the Day of the Constitution of May 3 and Independence Day on November 11, numerous concerts, lectures and scientific activities not only shaped mutual cultural relations, but also took over the role of Polish propaganda in Sweden. To a large extent owing to the Association’s activity, the picture of Poland and Poles was changing in Sweden. In the second half of the 1930s the great part of the Swedish public felt a liking and understanding for political and economic problems of the Second Polish Republic.
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