Fellowship on Polish Studies


Notable Events

The Leszek Kolakowski Lecture on “Is Poland still a liberal democracy? Constitutional breakdown and potential revival” by Wojciech Sadurski


Notable Events

The Leszek Kolakowski Lecture on “Central European philosophy and the search for truth in dark times” by Marci Shore


Notable Events

The Leszek Kolakowski Lecture on “Poland between Europeanism and Nationalism: National Exception or Regional Norm?” by Jacques Rupnik

POMP Event, Seminar on “Zygmunt Bauman as a Polish and Global Thinker: How Solid is ‘Liquid Modernity?'” with the attendance of Richard SennettKatarzyna Kasia, and Jaroslaw Kuisz.



POMP Fellow, Karolina Wigura-Kuisz

Notable Events

The Leszek Kolakowski Lecture on “Defective Democracies? The case of Poland in European Comparison” by Wolfgang Merkel

Visiting Fellow Series, Seminar on “Educators, revealers, abnegators: emotions as a political strategy” by Karolina Wigura-Kuisz

ESC Tuesday Seminar on “Poland’s experience of migrant crisis” by Joanna Fomina

ESC Tuesday Seminar on “The radicalisation of the Polish public debate” by Rafał Pankowski and Rasmus Kleis Nielsen

ESC Tuesday Seminar on “Poland’s contested model of economic transfornation”. Speakers: Marek Belka (former Prime Minister of Poland), Jerzy Osiatynski (former Finance Minister of Poland), Timothy Garton Ash (St Antony’s College).



POMP Fellow,  Karolina Wigura-Kuisz

Pomp Visiting Academic, Jarosław Kuisz

Notable Events

Annual Kolakowski Lecture on “What makes Poland special: Polish Nationalism in Comparative Context” by John Connelly

Two-day POMP Conference on “Dealing with a Difficult Past, Looking into the Future” organized by Karolina Wigura-Kuisz

“The Leszek Kolakowski Debate” by Johannes Zachhuber and John Dunn

ESC Lunchtime Seminar on “The End of the Love Affair? Centrla Europe drifting away from the West” by Jarosław Kuisz

POMP Core Events:

Event on “Dealing with a Difficult Past: Poland’s Transitional Justice in Comparative Perspective” by Adam CzarnotaMagdalena GawinRuti G. Teitel and  Agnieszka Holland

Film Screening of “In Darkness” followed by discussion with the director Agnieszka Holland

Three Polish distinguished diplomats, Tomasz Orłowski, Ambassador to Italy, Witold Sobków, Ambassador to the United Kingdom, and Bronisław Misztal, Ambassador to Portugal conversed with Professor Jan Zielonka about Polish raison d’état, participation in the European Union, and challenges related to representing Poland in member states of different specificities and dynamics.

Lecture on “Does the Left have a future in Poland?” by Adrian Zandberg

Talks on “Post-election discussion on the future of Poland” by Prof Jan Zielonka (St Antony’s College, Oxford), Dr Anna Gwiazda (King’s College London), Jacek Zakowski (Journalist and columnist for the weekly Polityka and the daily Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland), Boguslaw Chrabota (Editor-in-Chief of Rzeczpospolita daily, Poland)

Talks on “Life in translation: Zofia Nalkowska in English and Virginia Woolf in Polish” by  Dr Ursula Philips (Honorary Research Associate of UCL SSEES) and Dr Magdalena Heydel (Jagiellonian University, Poland)

Talks on “Allied responses to news about Auschwitz 1942–1944” by Prof. Michael Fleming from Polish University Abroad, London

A Keynote Lecture on “East European Mnemonic Wars: The Poltiics of Historical Memory Versus Historical Politics” by Jan Kubik

Seminar on “Will liberal parties in Poland thrive?” by Ryszard Petru

Seminar on “What’s happening in Poland?” by Aleksander Smolar

Seminar on “Why Ukraine Matters to Poland and the EU” by Wojciech Konończuk

POMP Seminar Series:

Seminar on “National raison d’etat: Poland and its neighbours” by Igor Janke and Jacek Stawiski

Seminar on “The Anti-totalitarian Utopia? Solidarność and the Global South in the 1980s.”

Seminar on “The Anti-totalitarian Utopia? Solidarność and the Global South in the 1980s” by Kim Christiaens

Seminar on “Continuity or Change? Polish Foreign Policy after 2015 National Elections” by Krzysztof Szczerski

Seminar on “Poland’s Response to the Refugee Crisis” by Maciej Duszczyk

Seminar on “Poland, Germany and Europe” by Marcin Zaborowski

Seminar on “Strategic security challenges for Europe AD 2016 and how to deal with them. A Polish view” by Sławomir Dębski


Notable Events

ESC Lunctime Seminar on “A Polish Fisherman on a troubled sea? Donald Tusk at the helm of the European Council by Maciek Jastrzebiec-Pyszynski (Vision for Central Europe Association), chaired by Kalypso Nicolaïdis (St Antony’s College, Oxford), co-sponsored by POMP

POMP Core Events:

Lecture on “One century, three Polands: the Second Republic, People’s Poland, and the Third Republic” by Dariusz Stola

Talk on ‘Electricity. Poland’s contribution to European energy doctrine’ by Prof.  Leszek Jesien (Institute of International Relations and Sustainable Development, Collegium  Civitas University, Warsaw), Dr Michał Kurtyka (University of Warsaw)

POMP Seminar Series:

Seminar on “Modern anti-discrimantion laws and policies in a homogenous state – possible or exceptive? Polish example” by Adam Bodnar and Barbara Havelková

Seminar on “Polish-African economic and political relations after 1989” by Andrzej Polus

Seminar on “Marxism, Christianity, liberalism: Polish democratic opposition and the idea of civil society, 1956-1989” by Dariusz Gawin

Poetry evening with Tomasz Różycki chaired by Antonia Lloyd-Jones

Seminar on “Gendering Migration: Women’s Writing, Displacement and Melancholy. Lecture on Selected Aspects of Polish Contemporary Literature” by. Urszula Chowaniec

Seminar on “Polish-African economic and political relations after 1989” by Patrick Kimunguyi

Seminar on “Tadeusz Mazowiecki (1927-2013): The Life and Death of the Catholic Third Way” by Piotr H. Kosicki

Seminar on “Under the Cross: Polish Catholic Identity in post-Christian Europe” by Adam Szostkiewicz

Seminar on “Democracy in Poland: Representation, participation, competition and accountability since 1989” by Anna Gwiazda

POMP World War I Film Series:

POMP World War I Film Series 1 “J’accuse” by Abel Gance (France, 1938) Discussant: Robert Gildea (Worcester College, Oxford) Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

POMP World War I Film Series 2 “All Quiet on the Western  Front” by Lewis Milestone (USA, 1930) Discussant: Sebastian Gehrig (Wadham College,  Oxford) Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

POMP World War I Film Series 3 “Good Soldier Svejk (part 1)” by Karel Stekly  (Czechoslovakia, 1956) Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

POMP World War I Film Series 4 “The End of St Petersburg” by Vsevolod Pudovkin (Soviet  Union, 1927) Discussant: David Priestland (St Edmund Hall, Oxford) Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

POMP World War I Film Series 5 “Paths of Glory” by  Stanley Kubrick (USA, 1957) Discussant: TBC Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s  College, Oxford)

POMP World War I Film Series 6 “Gallipoli” by Weir (USA, 1981) Discussant: TBC Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford



EU Visiting Fellow, Andris Teikmanis

Governing Body Fellow, Mikołaj Kunicki

Notable Events

Inauguration of POMP: In 2013, the ESC inaugurated its Programme on Modern Poland (POMP), sponsored by Dr  Leszek Czarnecki’s Getin Noble Bank, which focused on the politics, economy and society of Poland. The Director of the programme was the Governing Body Fellow Dr Mikołaj Kunicki.

2014 Elliot Lecture on “Ukraine and its Place in the World” organized by the Russian and Eurasian Studies Centre at St Antony’s College. The panellists were Mr Aleksander Kwasniewski – former President of Poland, Dr Javier Solana – former NATO Secretary General and EU High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy and Dr Gwendolyn Sasse, Nuffield College, Oxford. The discussion was moderated by the Chancellor of the University of Oxford, Lord Patten.

EU Visiting Fellow Seminar on “Prospects for the Eastern Partnership in 2015” by Andris Teikmanis (Latvian Ambassador to the UK) with Adam Reichardt (Editor-in-Chief of New Eastern Europe) as chair, and Peteris Zilgalvis (St Antony’s College, Oxford) as convenor. In association with POMP.

Poland’s Peaceful Revolution: 25 Years After the Polish Roundtable Talks: Part One with Aleksander SmolarPart Twowith Timothy Garton Ash, Part Three with Dariusz StolaPart Four with Anna BikontPart Five with David OstPart Sixwith Colin BundyPart Seven with András MinkPart Eigth with Charles Powell

POMP Panel Discussion: “The day that shook the world – 4 June 1989 in Poland and China. The 25th anniversary of the Polish national elections and the Tiananmen Square Massacre” Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

POMP Seminar Series:

Seminar on “Legal culture in the process of integration. Polish post-EU Accession migrants in the United Kingdom” by Agnieszka Kubal from the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, Oxford, with Jan Fellerer (Wolfson College, Oxford) as the discussant and Kalypso Nicolaidis (St Antony’s College, Oxford) as the chair.

Seminar on “Ironic tropes and the poetics of self: trickster tales from Highland Poland” by Nicolette Makovicky (School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies, Oxford) with Uilleam Blacker (Russian and East European Studies, Oxford) as the discussant and Tryfon Bampilis (St Antony’s College, Oxford) as chair.

Seminar on “Between secrecy and exposure: the Politics of accounting for the CIA prison in Poland” by Karolina Follisfrom the Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion, Lancaster University with Christopher Moran (Department of Politics and International Studies, University of Warwick) as the discussant and Othon Anastasakis (St Antony’s College, Oxford) as the chair.

Seminar on “Poles and Germans into Silesians: serial nationalisations in late 20th century Poland” by Jim Bjork(Department of History, King’s College, London) with Hugo Service (Department of History, Oxford) as the discussant and Paul Betts (St Antony’s College, Oxford) as chair.

Seminar on “Vectors of looking: reflections on the Luftwaffe’s aerial survey of Warsaw, 1944” by Ella Chmielewska(Edinburgh College of Art, University of Edinburgh) with John Beck (Department of English, Linguistics and Cultural Studies, University of Westminster) as the discussant and Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford) as chair.

Seminar on “From Kochanowski to Huelle and beyond: translating Polish literature before and after 1989” with Antonia Lloyds-JonesUrsula Phillips, and George Gomori as panel session presenters and Jan Fellerer (Wolfson College, Oxford) as chair.

Seminar on “Lenses of history: projections of Communism in Polish contemporary cinema” by Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford) with Marsha Siefert (Central European University, Budapest) as the discussant and Nicolette Makovicky (School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies, Oxford) as chair.

Seminar on ‘Poland, Ukraine, and the politics of history’ by Timothy Snyder (Yale University) with Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford) as chair.

POMP Film Series: Cinematic Perspectives on 1989 in Central and Eastern Europe

Escape from the Liberty Cinema by Wojciech Marczewski (Poland, 1990). Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

Kolya by Jan Sverak (Czech Republic, 1996) Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

Videograms of a Revolution by Harun Farocki and Andrei Ujică (Germany, 1992) Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

Bolshe Vita by Ibolya Fekete (Hungary, 1996) Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford)

Good Bye, Lenin! by Wolfgang Becker (Germany, 2003) Convenor: Mikołaj Kunicki (St Antony’s College, Oxford) Saturday 7th June



EU Visiting Fellow, Michal Wenzel

ESC Visiting Fellow, Jonathan Scheele

Notable Events

Visiting Fellows Lunch-Time Seminar on “Media development and democratic consolidation: The cases of Poland & Romania”. Speakers: Ioana Avadani (Media and Democracy in Central and Eastern Europe) and Michal Wenzel (Media and Democracy in Central and Eastern Europe)

Visiting Fellows Lunch-Time Seminar on “Romania and Poland – a review of differing post-accession realities” by  Jonathan Scheele

Launching of POMP:

The Programme was launched in July 2013, following the 2012 agreement with Dr Leszek Czarnecki’s Getin Noble Bank and the Oxford Noble Foundation. Its goals are to correct Western European bias in British academia and public sphere, and to direct and coordinate study and discussion of modern Poland with research and academic exchanges, seminar series, invited lectures, conferences and academic publications. POMP’s founders from Oxford include Professors Timothy Garton Ash, Norman Davies, Jan Zielonka and Margaret MacMillan (Warden of St Antony’s College).  The Director of the Programme is Dr Mikolaj Kunicki, historian of the 20th century Poland and Eastern Europe.

Curriculum and Goals

The curriculum will focus on modern Poland, i.e. changes occurring in the 1980s and the transformation post-1989.  At the conceptual level the Programme is based on social sciences and humanities that cover political, economic, sociological, historic and cultural aspects along with analysis of regional relationships.  POMP is an interdisciplinary initiative that highlights the merit of studying the country in the relationship to the continent, its neighbours in the region, and European and global institutions.

Goals of the Programme:

Organisation of conferences, seminar series and workshops

Becoming the centre for the study of Poland in the United Kingdom

Academic Publications

Seeking scholarships for DPhil students and post-doctoral fellows who want to study modern Poland

Establishing a translation fund to help researchers — for example, those who are writing PhD dissertations about Poland— make materials about Poland available

Ensuring better access to archival material on the Polish transformation to students and researchers around the world

Establishing international networks of scholars and helping to educate the next generations of scholars of Modern Poland

Organising student exchanges between universities and academic institutions


Notable Events

ESC Tuesday Seminar on “Poland’s relations with Ukraine in an integrated Europe: a difficult advocacy?” by Andrzej Podraza


Notable Events

ESC Tuesday Seminar on “The Warsaw Uprising of 1944 nad Its Impact on Postwar German-Polish Relations” by Bernd Martin


Notable Events

A one-day workshop was held at the Centre and was organised jointly with the Polish Institute of International Affairs. Speakers included Professor Wojciech Roszkowski, Dr Jaroslaw Pietras and Professor Adam Daniel Rotfeld.

Professor Bronislaw Geremek (former Foreign Minister of Poland, currently Professor of European Civilisation, College d’Europe and Member of the European Parliament) lectured on ‘Britain and Poland: The Neglected Friendship’

Lecture given by Leszek Kołakowski during Chancellor’s Seminar


Notable Events

Centre Evening Panel by Norman Davies



Notable Events

‘Conference entitled “Whose Europe? National Models and the Constitution of Europe”, convened by Bronislaw Geremek



Mid Career Fellow, Brice Couturier


Notable Events

Conference on “The New Democracies and the European Community”, which compared the experiences of Spain and Portugal in moving from dictatorship to democracy, and examined the past and future significance of the European Community for those difficult transitions. Prof. Geremek was a leading figure in the Polish transition since the birth of Solidarity in 1980. The financial support for the conference came from PRISA of Spain and the Spanish Chamber of Commerce in London.