• Pamięć o 1945 roku z perspektywy 70. Lat w historiografii i publicystyce niemieckiej

    Author: Dariusz Matelski
    Year of publication: 2016
    Source: Show
    Pages: 29-60
    DOI Address:
    PDF: ksm/21/ksm201602.pdf

    After World War Two, German historiography focused its attention on a few aspects:

    1) the resistance movement in Nazi Germany; 2) losses that Germans suffered from the Allies in the years 1943-45 (air raids, contributions, plunder, rapes and robbing);

    3) the occupation and 45-year long division of Germany. Only if the events were shown in this way, could Germans play the role of the victims instead of initiators of the war.

    The end of every decade after the fall of the Third Reich brought a discussion on the year 1945. A question was asked: Was it the end of German statehood or was it rather the beginning of a new stage on the way to a democratic state of free German countries?

    At the same time, East German historians argued with West German ones on the continuity of the German Reich after 1945. From 1951, it was the German Federal Republic that identified itself with the German Reich.

    Since the reunion of both German countries, the historiography of the new, joint German state has tried to show that the Third Reich was not rooted in German tra ditions, but was – as Ernst Nolte claimed – a „false link in the history of Germany”, and that the feeling of defeatism prevailed among Germans in 1945. It was social democrats and communists that were first to shake off that feeling. The contemporary German Federal Republic, does not feel responsible for the Third Reich, even though it is its legal heir.

    Summing up the positions of German historiography (in the years 1949-1990 of two German states – the German Federal Republic and the German Democratic Republic), I believe that the escape from the Eastern Front, expelling Germans, unconditional surrender, and hardships of the post-war period were the direct result of the war started in 1939 by the German nation led by Adolf Hitler. The sooner Germans universally accept it, the more respected European nation they will become. They must also recognise the fact that after 700 years, history came full circle – both Polish and German peoples have returned to their roots – the times when their predecessors came as settlers and conquerors…


    Author: Janusz Jartyś
    Institution: University of Szczecin
    Author: Jakub Zamana
    Institution: University of Warsaw
    Year of publication: 2017
    Source: Show
    Pages: 154-175
    DOI Address:
    PDF: rop/2017/rop201710.pdf

    The objective of this article is to present a critical analysis of selected elements of Nazi legacy in the Federal Republic of Germany (Deutsche Bundesrepublik, BRD). The remnants of the Nazi system have been tolerated, and even sheltered by the authorities of West Germany in almost all aspects of life. A question arises, then, about the effectiveness of the denazification after the Second World War and about a change in mentality in German society, as it should be noted that some elements of Nazi legacy were abandoned only in the 21st century, and therefore the Federal Republic of Germany has not managed to fully make reparations to the victims of Nazism. This article also discusses the fact that in a post-totalitarian state it is extremely difficult to find ‘pristine’ biographies, considering the number of former members of NSDAP who filled important offices in the BRD.

  • German Cultural Policy in the Reich Province of Danzig-West Prussia: A Short Characteristic

    Author: Sylwia Grochowina
    Institution: Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń
    Year of publication: 2018
    Source: Show
    Pages: 142-159
    DOI Address:
    PDF: apsp/60/apsp6009.pdf

    An important element of the ethnic and racial policy pursued by the German occupant in the Reich Province of Danzig-West Prussia was cultural policy (Kulturpolitik). Admittedly, since the first days of occupation the German authorities attached great importance to matters of culture – however, in the Nazi reality there was no cultural policy understood as encouragement and support offered by state authorities for independent, artistic creativity in its varied forms. The Nazis “controlled” culture, which played an important role in the process of creating a new reality in the annexed Polish territories. In the present paper, the author discusses selected issues illustrating the organization and forms of German cultural life in the Danzig-West Germany Province of the Reich. In outlining the German cultural policy, two main aspects were taken into account: culture as just another component of the broader German nationalistic and ethnic policy, as well as its role as an integral part of social reality.

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