Krakowi Jagelloonide ülikooli ajaloo instituudi professor Marta Kurkowska-Budzani külalisloeng “’Wild stadiums’ in the Polish Countryside in the Socialist Era”
The idea of modern sport was introduced in Polish society by communist authorities in the form of physical education in school curricula. While in the rural eastern parts of the country modern sport facilities had been lacking all along, during and after the Second World War, those modern sports infrastructures that did exist were largely destroyed. Consequently, local authorities tried to create sports grounds in connection with school buildings in every village but the financial resources of the impoverished state only allowed for very basic interventions. Therefore, young people created ‘wild stadiums’ where they could follow their needs of autotelic physical activity for fun and pleasure. These informal spaces that were temporarily used developed incrementally: they ‘grew out of’ the local landscape or developed in contrast to it. As informal spaces located on the margins of everyday life and out of sight of the authorities, these stadia provided young people living in the totalitarian country with autonomy and independence. The ‘official’ sports stadia on the other hand served both sports and ideological purposes, and one would perhaps expect that these stadia in rural areas would be dominant landscape elements, both metaphorically and literally. Yet, despite the fact that these stadia were created by the ruling party they did not enjoy a special, privileged status. As with the ‘wild stadia’, their existence was to the same extent determined by nature and landscape conditions as well as by Polish peasant culture and mentality. Examining various ‘official’ and ‘wild’ playfields created across the Polish countryside during the socialist era I explore issues of agency, conditionality, and materiality as they relate to these specific sport landscapes.
Prof. Marta Kurkowska-Budzan’s areas of expertise are the cultural history of 20th century Poland, memory studies, the methodology of historical research. She held postdoctoral fellowships at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC (2002) and the Remarque Institute, New York University (2001). Among her research projects are Oral Sources Re-visited, Sport in the Polish Peripheries, 1945-1989: Study in Historical Anthropology, National Armed Underground. Memory Discourses. Among her recent publications is the monograph, co-authored with M. Stasiak: “Stadion na peryferiach”, (Universitas 2016).
Prof. Marta Kurkowska-Budzani loeng toimub ERASMUS+ õppejõuvahetuse raames.