The Biographical Landscapes of Raphael Lemkin

book edited by Piotr Madajczyk

The book is the first biography of Raphael Lemkin to draw on a comprehensive body of research into Lemkin as a person and his background and will be of interest to both non-specialists and academics.

Piotr Madajczyk, The Biographical Landscapes of Raphael Lemkin, Routledge, 2023

Drawing on archival materials, a nuanced description is provided of the ethnically mixed Belarusian-Polish-Jewish border region where Lemkin grew up and which shaped him, clarifying at the same time some of the misinterpretations that have surrounded Lemkin’s life.

Lemkin’s professional career and intellectual interests up to the time of his flight from Poland after the German aggression of 1939 are exhaustively described. In the latter part of the book, the author poses, among other things, the question of how Lemkin’s activities in the United States were influenced by the experience of the first almost 40 years of his life.

Piotr Madajczyk is currently affiliated with the Institute of Political Studies of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland. Their research interests include recent German and Polish-German History, Social Engineering, and the biography of Lemkin. Publications include Social Engineering in Central and South-East Europe in the First Half of the 20th Century, in: Poland, Soviet Union, Russia. From Past through Memory to Politics (2020).