Leszek Kołakowski was Poland’s foremost twentieth century philosopher. Fifty years ago, he left communist Poland, to confront Marxism from abroad in a series of magisterial works. Historian Andrzej Friszke, in conversation with ‘Res Publica Nowa’s’ Tadeusz Koczanowicz, traces his intellectual and spiritual journey.
Res Publica Nowa
Solidarity in liberal democracies is pluralistic, argues political scientist Ira Katznelson; it allows particularities of time and place while satisfying a widely held human interest. Democracy, too, takes a variety of forms and is best measured by historical standards.
Throughout Europe, parliamentary politics has become increasingly intertwined with the politics of street protest, writes Mateusz Falkowski. And as recent events in Poland and Hungary show, a new dynamic of protest has emerged from the clash in central and eastern Europe between populist and liberal visions of democracy.
The right to truth denied
Appeals to the European Court of Human Rights to enforce the ‘right to truth’ in connection with the Franco regime and the Katyń massacre have been refused on procedural grounds. A long history of delayed justice has become a permanent case of justice denied, argues human rights lawyer Grażyna Baranowska.
How the European Union inhibits integration
Even a democratically elected president of the European Commission, or the elimination of the circus that is a European Parliament based in two cities, will not make citizens fall in love with the Union. What’s required, says Jan Zielonka, is a form of European integration able to meet the needs of societies put under pressure by current geopolitical tensions and the digital revolution.