Polish Romanticism

Quoted in H. Letiche, "Text(s) from Place, Space & Non-Place: Discourses of Poland" Studies in Cultures, Organizations and Societies 5 (1999): 97-127.

"Complex tropes of Polish romanticism":

1. stereotyping as a strategy of defining self versus other (vis-a-vis Germans: we are a people with imagination, we were more free, not so obsessed with the state, and we are more anarchic; vis-a-vis Russians: we are more Western)

2. fighting without a chance of winning - quixotic uprisings which could not succeed militarily but which are intended to shed enough blood so as to drive a symbolically potent and historically effective wedge against the enemy

3. participation in movements of liberation outside Poland in the hope that Poland will gain and the resulting sense of betrayal when the rewards are not forthcoming.

4. patriotic treason in which one joins the other side in order to betray it.

5. use of church symbolism (as in Solidarity) because the more secular ones have been usurped by the state