skip to content
 

Multicultural Commonwealth: Diverse Identities in Poland-Lithuania

Gdansk

Thursday, 14 December 2017, 10:30am - 5:30pm

William Mong Hall, Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge

 

A free, one-day conference on the extraordinary diversity of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, an early modern state that integrated various different ethnic groups, cultures, languages and religions, often with relative mutual respect and tolerance. At the same time, diversity also led to conflicts and controversies. The conference will include Polish, Lithuanian, Ruthenian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Jewish, German and Ottoman perspectives on the Commonwealth.

 

Speakers will include some of the most distinguished names in scholarship and creative work on the Commonwealth:

 

Norman Davies, St Anthony's College, Oxford

Karin Friedrich, University of Aberdeen

Robert Frost, University of Aberdeen 

Tomasz Grusiecki, Central European University

Leszek Korporowicz, Jagiellonian University, Kraków

Simon Lewis, Freie Universität Berlin       

Olenka Pevny, University of Cambridge  

Kristina Sabaliauskaitė, novelist and art historian

Magda Teter, Fordham University

 

Attendance is free. Guests are very welcome to attend the entire day or just selected sessions. Please reserve a free ticket via Eventbrite.

 

10:00am – 10:45am:             Coffee

10:45am – 11:00am:             Welcome and Introduction: Stanley Bill.

 

11:00am – 12:30pm:             Session 1

Leszek Korporowicz:          Bridging Cultural Diversity: Axiological Roots of the Jagiellonian Commonwealth.

Karin Friedrich:                   ‘Into hell, where a third of all devils speak German’: The Polish Reformation between Wittenberg and the Torun Colloquy of 1645.

Magda Teter:                       How Jewish is Polish History?

 

12:30pm – 1:30pm:              Lunch Break

 

1:30pm – 3:00pm:                Session 2

Olenka Pevny:                     Restaging Orthodoxy: Metropolitan Peter Mohyla’s renovation of medieval churches in early-modern Kyiv.

Tomasz Grusiecki:              Ottomanisation as Europeanisation: Polish-Lithuanian Costume and the Search for a Shared Past.

Robert Frost:                       Competitive Cosmography: Observations on the 500th Anniversary of the Publication of Maciej Miechowita's Treatise on the Two Sarmatias.

 

3:00pm – 3:30pm:                 Coffee

 

3:30pm – 5:00pm:                 Session 3

Kristina Sabaliauskaitė:      Reconstructing 17th- and 18th-Century Wilno in a Novel: Silva Rerum as a Multilingual Chorus of Cultures and Narratives.

Simon Lewis:                       Belarus and the Commonwealth: Between Diversity and Difference.

Norman Davies:                   National Perspectives on a Multinational Commonwealth.

 

5:00pm – 5:30pm:                 Final Discussion

Latest News and Events

Multicultural Commonwealth: Diverse Identities in Poland-Lithuania

14 December 2017

A one-day conference on the extraordinary diversity of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, a state that integrated various different ethnic groups, cultures, languages and religions, often with relative mutual respect and tolerance. At the same time, diversity also led to conflicts and controversies. The conference will include Polish, Lithuanian, Ruthenian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Jewish, German and Ottoman perspectives on the Commonwealth.

Timothy Garton Ash: Poland, Europe, Freedom

31 October 2017

In celebration of the permanent endowment of the Polish Studies initiative at the University of Cambridge, Professor Timothy Garton Ash (University of Oxford) will give an address on the subject of freedom in Poland and in Europe over the last four decades. After the lecture, we invite all guests to an informal wine reception to celebrate the permanent endowment of Cambridge Polish Studies.

Historical Truth: Poland and the Politics of the Past

21 October 2017

In the twentieth century, Poland became the laboratory for two violent totalitarian experiments, suffering massive destruction and harsh oppression from both Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. The unhealed wounds of this painful history are still strikingly present in both public debate and politics in Poland today. In this talk, Dr Stanley Bill, Cambridge's Lecturer in Polish Studies, examines different perspectives on historical ‘truth’ and the politics of history.

Talkman Prize for Literary Translation: Cambridge student in Poland

1 September 2017

Over the last three years, we have been very proud to conduct a competition for Cambridge students to translate Polish literature into English. Thanks to the kind sponsorship of Talkman Language Solutions, the first prize in the competition has been a summer school course in Polish language and culture at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków. Cameron Holloway has written a brief account of his time in Kraków this summer.

Keep in Touch