In a normal country, the rights of labour unions render it possible for the demands of workers to be met peacefully. But in a place where there is no right to strike, where legislation imposed on workers annuls with one fell swoop a hundred years of labour union achievements, where the government lowers the workers’ wages, which are already barely enough to cover basic needs – what else is left but to shout and rebel?
On the 65th anniversary of the unrest of Poznań June, The Institute of National Remembrance – Branch in Poznań in the cooperation with the Faculty of History of The Adam Mickiewicz University prepared a dedicated monograph entitled “28 June 1956 in Poznań. One of the first months of Polish freedom” (in German: “28 Juni 1956 in Posen. Der erste der polnischen Monate der Freiheit”). The intention of the authors of this monographic study is to promote knowledge about the first outbreak of workers’ dissatisfaction in communist Poland.
The publication is part of the scientific, educational and popularizing activities aimed at more and more complete presentation of knowledge about the causes, course and consequences of the Protest of Poznań Workers of June 28, 1956, which will contribute to the commemoration of this event and constitute an attempt to honor all those who in Poznań fought and died in the name of individual freedom and the right of nations to decide their fate. The process that led to the eruption of social discontent was outlined.
The new release also touches upon the topic less popular with Polish historians, namely the reactions of selected communist bloc countries and the Western world, and discusses the policy of historical memory (English and German-speaking readers will learn that the people of Poland and the whole of Central Europe could attempt to restore the memory of the heroes only after the emergence of the “Solidarity” Trade Union). The book’s rich content is supplemented with 63 illustrations, helpful in understanding the geography of workers’ protests and of the fights in the city, as well as 16 source documents.
The publication is available in English and German and is intended for foreigners interested in the circumstances of the Poznań Uprising in 1956.