Harvard alumna Patrice M. Dabrowski will return to campus for an event celebrating the publication of Poland: The First Thousand Years (NIU Press, 2014). She will also be recognized as a recipient of the Knight’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland, awarded by the President of Poland to those who have rendered great service to the Polish nation.
Poland: The First Thousand Years is a sweeping account designed to amplify major figures, moments, milestones, and turning points in Polish history. These include important battles and illustrious individuals, alliances forged by marriages and choices of religious denomination, and meditations on the likes of the Polish battle slogan “for our freedom and yours” that resounded during the Polish fight for independence in the long 19th century and echoed in the Solidarity period of the late 20th century.
The experience of oppression helped Poles to endure and surmount various challenges in the 20th century, and Poland’s demonstration of strength was a model for other peoples seeking to extract themselves from foreign yoke. Dabrowski’s work situates Poland and the Poles within a broader European framework that locates this multiethnic and multidenominational region squarely between East and West. This illuminating chronicle will appeal to general readers, and will be of special interest to those of Polish descent who will appreciate Poland’s longstanding republican experiment.
Dabrowski has taught at Harvard, Brown, and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and currently works at the University of Vienna. In addition to Poland: The First Thousand Years, she is the author of Commemorations and the Shaping of Modern Poland.