J. G. A. Forster, member of J. Cook's expedition towards South Pole, spent the majority of his life in Poland. In the years 1784—1787 he was professor of natural history at the Wilno University. Born near Gdańsk, he never lost the consciousness of his Polish citizenship. Forster's publications have enriched the culture and science of England. France, Germany, Poland and other countries.
The text deals with the issue of “historical biography”. It aims to reconstruct the key concepts connected with the biographical publishing series “The Legacies of the progressive personalities of our past”. The text answers the question what conceptual framework surrounded and legitimised the edition.
The article is devoted to the late Zygmunt Bauman (d. January 2017), a scholar who made an enormous impact on world humanities at the turn of the twentieth century. It briefly presents Bauman’s life and a number of the best known concepts from his works. The author first discusses Bauman’s attitude toward Marxist theory and explains his revision of it. He then introduces the main ideas of Bauman work Modernity and the Holocaust. The article ends with a review of Bauman’s reflections on globalisation and a discussion of his thesis concerning the crisis of the nation state.
The biographies of the journalists of Polish press published in West Prussia in the 19th and early 20th century usually highlight their patriotic commitment and admirable perseverance in launching and running various newspapers and journals. However, we can also find in their lives episodes that did them little credit, or even were downright disgraceful.
Maria Manteuffel letters from the period 1844–1859 offer invaluable insights into the life of Polish gentry in the former Polish Livonia (Infl anty Polskie), incorporated into the Vitebsk Governorate of the Russian Empire. These letters of mother to her son Gustaw Manteuffel, student at the University of Dorpat (now Tartu, Estonia) who was to become one of great Polish historiographers of late 19th century, are an important historical source. Although they deal mainly with family matters, the mundane is interspersed with notes and comments which throw light on the Russian tax burdens and the social life of the aristocracy and the local gentry. An eye-catching feature of that correspondence is a string of Latvian (Latgalian) words and phrases which are interspersed into Maria Manteuffel’s sentences. There is not much we know about her life. Born in Wielony in 1811, she was heiress to the Drycany estate. In 1828 she married baron Jakub Manteuffel. Of their children only four sons survived to adulthood. Born into a Polish-Livonian family, Maria Manteuffel became a Polish patriot, patroness and sponsor of various patriotic initiatives. When the Drycany estate was sequestrated by the Russian authorities after the 1863 January Uprising, she moved to Lesno and later to Riga where she died in 1874. She was buried at Drycany beside her husband; in 1916 her son was buried in the same family vault.
In post-humanist studies of identity, otherness and exclusion – conducted within the de-anthropocentrism of the humanities – questions arise about the condition of non-human subjects (animals, plants, things) that gain the cultural and social status of Others. As non-human entities, they have a socializing value, cement interpersonal relations, attract people to certain places. They have performative, integrative and co-creating abilities. The posthumanistic “turn towards things” opens the room for the construction of their social (auto) biographies, a development which already has been taking place in contemporary children’s literature. The problem of the creation of (auto)biographies of non-human subjects is presented in this article on the example of the picture book Otto: The Autobiography of a Teddy Bear by Tomi Ungerer. The artist gives the non-anthropomorphized plush toy the status of a non-human subject and an active actor of social life as a medium of unoffi cial memory of the Holocaust. Ungerer consciously and innovatively uses the key determinants of the posthuman discourse, including intimate childhood experiences.