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Grant number like: FT-57531-10

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Svetlana P. Vassileva-Karagyozova
University of Kansas, Lawrence (Lawrence, KS 66045-7505)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2010 – 9/30/2010

Communism through the Eyes of a Child: The Post-1989 Polish Initiation Novel

This book project examines the literary reflection of recent changes in Polish politics and society. No attempt has been made to provide an in-depth study of the post-1989 Polish initiation novel as a specific genre, as a generational assessment of the previous communist era, or as an examination of the psychological costs of Poland's transition from communism to democracy. Almost two decades after the 1989 collapse of communism in Poland, this project provides that analysis. It interrogates a selection of post-1989 pseudo-autobiographical novels whose central theme is the recollection of childhood and adolescent experiences in the People's Republic of Poland. These novels atomize the grand discourse of "official" history by presenting individual, intimate accounts of ordinary people's private affairs under the communist regime. Thus, they can help answer important questions such as Why did Communism fail? and Why is the transition to democracy taking so long?