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Tom 6 (2015): Pamięć a przestrzeń

Pamięć wrocławian o prusko-niemieckim dziedzictwie materialnym

  • Paweł Trojanowski
  • Stanisław Witold Kłopot
13 września 2016


The residents of Wrocław remembering the city’s Prussian-German material heritage

The problem of what people living in old, pre-war houses in Wrocław know about their former German or Jewish inhabitants and about their material legacy. The article is part of the discussion concerning the revival of the memory of the German city launched in the 1990s. Some political and intellectual elites of Wrocław believe that reviving the memory of the Prussian-German cultural heritage encoded in the city’s material substance, in the organisation of its functional and symbolic space is an essential component of the identity of the city and its residents. What still remains unanswered are two major questions of the proposed historical policy: to what extent the city residents themselves remember and want to remember its Prussian-German heritage, and to what extent the current policy of remembrance can erase and soft en the negative attitude of Wrocław residents towards the Germans shaped by the experiences of their families and cultivated with great care in the post-war period. Acceptance of the reconstruction of the material substance does not apply, however, if it is to concern purely symbolic structures which, in addition, symbolise the power of German or Prussian militarism monuments. The aversion to symbolism with German connotations is clearly of greater significance than the common aversion to Jews.