Culture of Poland
Overview
 
The culture
Culture
Culture is a term that has many different inter-related meanings. For example, in 1952, Alfred Kroeber and Clyde Kluckhohn compiled a list of 164 definitions of "culture" in Culture: A Critical Review of Concepts and Definitions...

 of Poland
Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

is closely connected with its intricate 1000 year history
History of Poland
The History of Poland is rooted in the arrival of the Slavs, who gave rise to permanent settlement and historic development on Polish lands. During the Piast dynasty Christianity was adopted in 966 and medieval monarchy established...

 Its unique character developed as a result of its geography at the confluence of various European regions. With origins in the culture of the Proto-Slavs, over time Polish culture has been profoundly influenced by its interweaving ties with the Germanic
Germanic languages
The Germanic languages constitute a sub-branch of the Indo-European language family. The common ancestor of all of the languages in this branch is called Proto-Germanic , which was spoken in approximately the mid-1st millennium BC in Iron Age northern Europe...

, Latinate and Byzantine
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 worlds as well as in continual dialog with the many other ethnic groups and minorities living in Poland
Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

.
Encyclopedia
The culture
Culture
Culture is a term that has many different inter-related meanings. For example, in 1952, Alfred Kroeber and Clyde Kluckhohn compiled a list of 164 definitions of "culture" in Culture: A Critical Review of Concepts and Definitions...

 of Poland
Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

is closely connected with its intricate 1000 year history
History of Poland
The History of Poland is rooted in the arrival of the Slavs, who gave rise to permanent settlement and historic development on Polish lands. During the Piast dynasty Christianity was adopted in 966 and medieval monarchy established...

 Its unique character developed as a result of its geography at the confluence of various European regions. With origins in the culture of the Proto-Slavs, over time Polish culture has been profoundly influenced by its interweaving ties with the Germanic
Germanic languages
The Germanic languages constitute a sub-branch of the Indo-European language family. The common ancestor of all of the languages in this branch is called Proto-Germanic , which was spoken in approximately the mid-1st millennium BC in Iron Age northern Europe...

, Latinate and Byzantine
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 worlds as well as in continual dialog with the many other ethnic groups and minorities living in Poland
Poland
Poland , officially the Republic of Poland , is a country in Central Europe bordered by Germany to the west; the Czech Republic and Slovakia to the south; Ukraine, Belarus and Lithuania to the east; and the Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast, a Russian exclave, to the north...

. The people of Poland have traditionally been seen as hospitable to artists from abroad and eager to follow cultural and artistic trends popular in other countries. In the 19th and 20th centuries the Polish focus on cultural advancement often took precedence over political and economic activity. These factors have contributed to the versatile nature of Polish art, with all its complex nuances. Nowadays, Poland is a highly developed country
Developed country
A developed country is a country that has a high level of development according to some criteria. Which criteria, and which countries are classified as being developed, is a contentious issue...

; however, it retains its tradition.

Cuisine

Polish foods kielbasa
Kielbasa
Kielbasa, kołbasa, kobasa, kovbasa, kobasa, kobasi, and kubasa are common North American anglicizations for a type of Eastern European sausage. Synonyms include Polish sausage, Ukrainian sausage, etc...

, pierogi
Pierogi
Pierogi are dumplings of unleavened dough - first boiled, then they are baked or fried usually in butter with onions - traditionally stuffed with potato filling, sauerkraut, ground meat, cheese, or fruit...

 (pierożki), pyzy
Pyzy
Pyzy is a village in the administrative district of Gmina Mońki, within Mońki County, Podlaskie Voivodeship, in north-eastern Poland. It lies approximately north of Mońki and north-west of the regional capital Białystok.-References:...

 (meat-filled dough balls), kopytka
Kopytka
Kopytka, kapytki are a kind of potato dumpling. They are very similar to gnocchi although they are typically served baked with cheese, fried bacon or onion...

, gołąbki , śledzie (herring
Herring
Herring is an oily fish of the genus Clupea, found in the shallow, temperate waters of the North Pacific and the North Atlantic oceans, including the Baltic Sea. Three species of Clupea are recognized. The main taxa, the Atlantic herring and the Pacific herring may each be divided into subspecies...

) ('ɕlɛd͡ʑɛ), bigos
Bigos
Bigos , known as a Hunter's Stew, is a traditional meat stew typical of Polish, Lithuanian, Belarusians and Ukrainian cuisine, considered to be the Polish and Ukrainian national dish....

, kotlety (schabowy
Kotlet schabowy
Kotlet schabowy is a Polish variety of pork cutlet coated with breadcrumbs similar to Viennese schnitzel, but made of pork tenderloin , or with pork chop....

 and mielony) and much more. Traditionally, food such as soups have been prepared in large vessels intended for groups, often necessitating the use of devices such as oars in their preparation. Traditionally, hospitality is very important.

In the Middle Ages, as the cities of Poland grew larger in size and the food markets developed, the culinary exchange of ideas progressed & people got acquainted with new dishes and recipes. Some regions became well known for the type of sausage they made and many sausages of today still carry those original names. The peasants acknowledged their honorable judgment, allowing them to maintain nourished for longer periods of time.

Architecture

Polish cities and towns reflect the whole spectrum of European styles. Poland's Eastern frontiers used to mark the outermost boundary of the influences of Western architecture on the continent.

History has not been good to Poland's architectural monuments. However, a number of ancient structures have survived: castles, churches, and stately buildings, often unique in the regional or European context. Some of them have been painstakingly restored, like Wawel Castle
Wawel Castle
The Gothic Wawel Castle in Kraków in Poland was built at the behest of Casimir III the Great and consists of a number of structures situated around the central courtyard. In the 14th century it was rebuilt by Jogaila and Jadwiga of Poland. Their reign saw the addition of the tower called the Hen's...

, or completely reconstructed after being destroyed in the Second World War, including the Old Town
Warsaw Old Town
Warsaw's Old Town is the oldest historic district of the city. It is bounded by Wybrzeże Gdańskie, along the bank of the Vistula, and by Grodzka, Mostowa and Podwale Streets. It is one of Warsaw's most prominent tourist attractions....

 and Royal Castle in Warsaw, as well as the Old Towns of Gdańsk
Gdansk
Gdańsk is a Polish city on the Baltic coast, at the centre of the country's fourth-largest metropolitan area.The city lies on the southern edge of Gdańsk Bay , in a conurbation with the city of Gdynia, spa town of Sopot, and suburban communities, which together form a metropolitan area called the...

 and Wrocław. Architecture of Gdańsk
Gdansk
Gdańsk is a Polish city on the Baltic coast, at the centre of the country's fourth-largest metropolitan area.The city lies on the southern edge of Gdańsk Bay , in a conurbation with the city of Gdynia, spa town of Sopot, and suburban communities, which together form a metropolitan area called the...

 is mostly Hanseatic architecture, common in cities along the Baltic sea
Baltic Sea
The Baltic Sea is a brackish mediterranean sea located in Northern Europe, from 53°N to 66°N latitude and from 20°E to 26°E longitude. It is bounded by the Scandinavian Peninsula, the mainland of Europe, and the Danish islands. It drains into the Kattegat by way of the Øresund, the Great Belt and...

 and in the northern part of Central Eastern Europe. The architectural style of Wrocław is representative of German architecture, since it was a part of the German states for centuries. The centre of Kazimierz Dolny
Kazimierz Dolny
Kazimierz Dolny is a small town in Central Poland, on the right bank of the Vistula river in Puławy County, Lublin Province.It is a considerable tourist attraction as one of the most beautifully situated little towns in Poland. It enjoyed its greatest prosperity in the 16th and the first half of...

 on the Vistula
Vistula
The Vistula is the longest and the most important river in Poland, at 1,047 km in length. The watershed area of the Vistula is , of which lies within Poland ....

 is a good example of a well-preserved medieval town. Poland's ancient capital, Kraków
Kraków
Kraków also Krakow, or Cracow , is the second largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland. Situated on the Vistula River in the Lesser Poland region, the city dates back to the 7th century. Kraków has traditionally been one of the leading centres of Polish academic, cultural, and artistic life...

, ranks among the best-preserved Gothic
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

 and Renaissance
Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

 urban complexes in Europe. Meanwhile, the legacy of the Kresy
Kresy
The Polish term Kresy refers to a land considered by Poles as historical eastern provinces of their country. Today, it makes western Ukraine, western Belarus, as well as eastern Lithuania, with such major cities, as Lviv, Vilnius, and Hrodna. This territory belonged to the Polish-Lithuanian...

 Marchlands of Poland's eastern regions with Wilno and Lwów (now Vilnius and Lviv) as two major centres for the arts, played a special role in these developments with Roman-Catholic church architecture deserving special attention. In Vilnius
Vilnius
Vilnius is the capital of Lithuania, and its largest city, with a population of 560,190 as of 2010. It is the seat of the Vilnius city municipality and of the Vilnius district municipality. It is also the capital of Vilnius County...

 (Lithuania
Lithuania
Lithuania , officially the Republic of Lithuania is a country in Northern Europe, the biggest of the three Baltic states. It is situated along the southeastern shore of the Baltic Sea, whereby to the west lie Sweden and Denmark...

) there are about 40 baroque
Baroque
The Baroque is a period and the style that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, dance, and music...

 and Renaissance
Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

 churches. In Lviv (Ukraine
Ukraine
Ukraine is a country in Eastern Europe. It has an area of 603,628 km², making it the second largest contiguous country on the European continent, after Russia...

) there are Gothic
Gothic architecture
Gothic architecture is a style of architecture that flourished during the high and late medieval period. It evolved from Romanesque architecture and was succeeded by Renaissance architecture....

, Renaissance
Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

, and baroque
Baroque
The Baroque is a period and the style that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, dance, and music...

 urban s with influences of the orthodox and Armenian church.

One of the best-preserved examples of the Modernist architecture in Europe is located in Katowice
Katowice
Katowice is a city in Silesia in southern Poland, on the Kłodnica and Rawa rivers . Katowice is located in the Silesian Highlands, about north of the Silesian Beskids and about southeast of the Sudetes Mountains.It is the central district of the Upper Silesian Metropolis, with a population of 2...

, Upper Silesia
Upper Silesia
Upper Silesia is the southeastern part of the historical and geographical region of Silesia. Since the 9th century, Upper Silesia has been part of Greater Moravia, the Duchy of Bohemia, the Piast Kingdom of Poland, again of the Lands of the Bohemian Crown and the Holy Roman Empire, as well as of...

, designed and built in the 1930s. Interesting buildings were also constructed during the Communist era in the style of Socialist Realism
Socialist realism
Socialist realism is a style of realistic art which was developed in the Soviet Union and became a dominant style in other communist countries. Socialist realism is a teleologically-oriented style having its purpose the furtherance of the goals of socialism and communism...

; while some remarkable examples of modern architecture were erected more

Art

Polish art has always reflected European trends while maintaining its unique character. The Kraków
Kraków
Kraków also Krakow, or Cracow , is the second largest and one of the oldest cities in Poland. Situated on the Vistula River in the Lesser Poland region, the city dates back to the 7th century. Kraków has traditionally been one of the leading centres of Polish academic, cultural, and artistic life...

 school of Historicist painting developed by Jan Matejko
Jan Matejko
Jan Matejko was a Polish painter known for paintings of notable historical Polish political and military events. His most famous works include oil on canvas paintings like Battle of Grunwald, paintings of numerous other battles and court scenes, and a gallery of Polish kings...

 produced monumental portrayals of customs and significant events in Polish history. Stanisław Witkiewicz was an ardent supporter of Realism
Realism (arts)
Realism in the visual arts and literature refers to the general attempt to depict subjects "in accordance with secular, empirical rules", as they are considered to exist in third person objective reality, without embellishment or interpretation...

 in Polish art, its main representative being Jozef Chełmoński. The Młoda Polska (Young Poland
Young Poland
Young Poland is a modernist period in Polish visual arts, literature and music, covering roughly the years between 1890 and 1918. It was a result of strong aesthetic opposition to the ideas of Positivism...

) movement witnessed the birth of modern Polish art, and engaged in a great deal of formal experimentation led by Jacek Malczewski
Jacek Malczewski
Jacek Malczewski was one of the most famous painters of Polish Symbolism. In his creativity he successfully joins the predominant style of his times with motifs of Polish martyrdom.-See also:...

 (Symbolism
Symbolism (arts)
Symbolism was a late nineteenth-century art movement of French, Russian and Belgian origin in poetry and other arts. In literature, the style had its beginnings with the publication Les Fleurs du mal by Charles Baudelaire...

), Stanisław Wyspiański, Józef Mehoffer
Józef Mehoffer
Józef Mehoffer was a Polish painter and decorative artist, one of the leading artists of the Young Poland movement and one of the most revered Polish artists of his time.-Life:...

, and a group of Polish Impressionists. Artists of the twentieth-century Avant-Garde represented various schools and trends. The art of Tadeusz Makowski
Tadeusz Makowski
Tadeusz Makowski was a prominent Polish painter active in France for most of his life. He was born in Oświęcim. Makowski attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków. He studied under Jan Stanisławski and Józef Mehoffer. In 1909, he departed for Paris. Makowski started off as a landscape painter...

 was influenced by Cubism
Cubism
Cubism was a 20th century avant-garde art movement, pioneered by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque, that revolutionized European painting and sculpture, and inspired related movements in music, literature and architecture...

; while Władysław Strzemiński and Henryk Stażewski
Henryk Stazewski
Henryk Stażewski was a Polish painter, considered to be a pioneer of the classical avant-garde of the 1920s and 1930s. He was a foremost representative of the Constructivist movement, as well as the co-creator of the Geometric Abstract art movement....

 worked within the Constructivist idiom. Distinguished contemporary artists include Roman Opałka, Leon Tarasewicz, Jerzy Nowosielski
Jerzy Nowosielski
Jerzy Nowosielski was a Kraków-born Polish painter, graphic artist, scenographer, and illustrator.He was well-known for his religious compositions in the Orthodox Churches in Kraków, Białystok and Jelenia Góra, the Roman Catholic Church of the Holy Cross at Wesoła, the Franciscan Church in the...

, Wojciech Siudmak
Wojciech Siudmak
Wojciech Kazimierz "Wojtek" Siudmak is a Polish painter, currently living in France. His works are often used as illustrations for science fiction and fantasy literature, including the Polish edition of Frank Herbert's Dune series.The French publisher Presses-Pocket used his artwork on the covers...

, Mirosław Bałka, and Katarzyna Kozyra
Katarzyna Kozyra
Katarzyna Kozyra is a Polish video artist. She graduated in 1993 from the Warsaw Academy of Fine Art and received a Paszport Polityki award in 1997. She has exhibited internationally since 1997, at venues including Brown University and Carnegie International in the U.S.Her art was involved in a...

 and Zbigniew Wąsiel in the younger generation. The most celebrated Polish sculptors include Xawery Dunikowski
Xawery Dunikowski
Xawery Dunikowski was a Polish sculptor and artist, notable for surviving Auschwitz concentration camp, and best known for his Neo-Romantic sculptures and Auschwitz-inspired art.- Biography :...

, Katarzyna Kobro
Katarzyna Kobro
Katarzyna Kobro was a Polish sculptor of Latvian origin. She studied at the School of Painting, Sculpture and Drawing, the second Free Workshops , Moscow, 1917-20. In 1920 she moved to Smolensk, and in 1921 she married WLADYSLAW STRZEMINSKI. In 1920-22 she was associated with the Vitebsk-based...

, Alina Szapocznikow
Alina Szapocznikow
Alina Szapocznikow was a Polish sculptor.As a Jew, she was imprisoned in the Pabianice and Łódź Ghettos and in Auschwitz, Bergen-Belsen and Theresienstadt Nazi concentration camps. She was the wife of Polish graphic designer Roman Cieślewicz...

 and Magdalena Abakanowicz
Magdalena Abakanowicz
Magdalena Abakanowicz is a Polish sculptor. She is notable for her use of textiles as a sculptural medium. She was a professor at the Academy of Fine Arts in Poznań, Poland from 1965 to 1990 and a visiting professor at University of California, Los Angeles in 1984...

. Since the inter-war years, Polish art and documentary photography has enjoyed worldwide recognition. In the sixties the Polish Poster School was formed, with Henryk Tomaszewski and Waldemar Świerzy
Waldemar Świerzy
Waldemar Świerzy is a Polish artist.He graduated from the Kraków Academy of Fine Arts in 1952. He has subsequently been Professor in the University of Fine Arts in Poznań from 1965 and Professor in the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw since 1994.In 1992 the government of Poland issued a postage...

 at its head.

Literature

Since the Christian and the subsequent access to Western European civilization, Poles developed a significant literary production in Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

Conspicuous authors of the Middle Ages are among others Gallus Anonymus
Gallus Anonymus
Gallus Anonymus is the name traditionally given to the anonymous author of Gesta principum Polonorum , composed in Latin about 1115....

, Wincenty Kadłubek and Jan Długosz, an author of the monumental work on the history of Poland. With the arrival of the Renaissance, Poles came under the influence of the artistic patterns of the humanistic style, actively participating in the European issues of that time with their Latin works.

The origins of Polish literature written in the first language
First language
A first language is the language a person has learned from birth or within the critical period, or that a person speaks the best and so is often the basis for sociolinguistic identity...

 go back beyond the 14th century. In the 16th century the poetic works of Jan Kochanowski
Jan Kochanowski
Jan Kochanowski was a Polish Renaissance poet who established poetic patterns that would become integral to Polish literary language.He is commonly regarded as the greatest Polish poet before Adam Mickiewicz, and the greatest Slavic poet, prior to the 19th century.-Life:Kochanowski was born at...

 established him as a leading representative of European Renaissance literature. Baroque
Baroque
The Baroque is a period and the style that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, dance, and music...

 and Neo-Classicist belle letters made a significant contribution to the cementing of Poland's peoples of many cultural backgrounds. The early 19th century novel "Manuscrit trouvé à Saragosse
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa , is a frame-tale novel by the Polish Enlightenment author, Count Jan Potocki...

" by Count Jan Potocki
Jan Potocki
Count Jan Nepomucen Potocki was a Polish nobleman, Polish Army Captain of Engineers, ethnologist, Egyptologist, linguist, traveler, adventurer and popular author of the Enlightenment period, whose life and exploits made him a legendary figure in his homeland...

, which survived in its Polish translation after the loss of the original in French, became a world classic. Wojciech Has
Wojciech Has
Wojciech Jerzy Has was a Polish film director, screenwriter and film producer.-Early Life & Studies:...

' film based on it, a favourite of Luis Buñuel
Luis Buñuel
Luis Buñuel Portolés was a Spanish-born filmmaker — later a naturalized citizen of Mexico — who worked in Spain, Mexico, France and the US..-Early years:...

, later became a cult film on university campuses. Poland's great Romantic literature flourished in the 19th century when the country had lost its independence. The poets Adam Mickiewicz
Adam Mickiewicz
Adam Bernard Mickiewicz ) was a Polish poet, publisher and political writer of the Romantic period. One of the primary representatives of the Polish Romanticism era, a national poet of Poland, he is seen as one of Poland's Three Bards and the greatest poet in all of Polish literature...

, Juliusz Słowacki and Zygmunt Krasiński
Zygmunt Krasinski
Count Napoleon Stanisław Adam Ludwig Zygmunt Krasiński , a Polish count, is traditionally ranked with Mickiewicz and Słowacki as one of Poland's Three National Bards — the trio of great Romantic poets who influenced national consciousness during the period of Poland's political bondage.-Life and...

, the "Three Bards
Three Bards
The Three Bards are the national poets of Polish Romantic literature. They lived and worked in exile during the partitions of Poland which ended the existence of the Polish sovereign state...

", became the spiritual leaders of a nation deprived of its sovereignty, and prophesied its revival. The novelist Henryk Sienkiewicz
Henryk Sienkiewicz
Henryk Adam Aleksander Pius Sienkiewicz was a Polish journalist and Nobel Prize-winning novelist. A Polish szlachcic of the Oszyk coat of arms, he was one of the most popular Polish writers at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, and received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1905 for his...

, who won the Nobel Prize
Nobel Prize
The Nobel Prizes are annual international awards bestowed by Scandinavian committees in recognition of cultural and scientific advances. The will of the Swedish chemist Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, established the prizes in 1895...

 in 1905, eulogised the historical tradition. It is difficult to grasp fully the detailed tradition of Polish Romanticism
Romanticism in Poland
Romanticism in Poland was a literary, artistic and intellectual period in the evolution of Polish culture that began around 1820, coinciding with the publication of Adam Mickiewicz's first poems in 1822. It ended with the suppression of the January 1863 Uprising against the Russian Empire in 1864. ...

 and its consequences for Polish literature without a thorough knowledge of Polish history
History of Poland
The History of Poland is rooted in the arrival of the Slavs, who gave rise to permanent settlement and historic development on Polish lands. During the Piast dynasty Christianity was adopted in 966 and medieval monarchy established...

.

In the early 20th century many outstanding Polish literary works emerged from the new cultural exchange and Avant-Garde experimentation. The legacy of the Kresy
Kresy
The Polish term Kresy refers to a land considered by Poles as historical eastern provinces of their country. Today, it makes western Ukraine, western Belarus, as well as eastern Lithuania, with such major cities, as Lviv, Vilnius, and Hrodna. This territory belonged to the Polish-Lithuanian...

 marshlands of Poland's eastern regions with Wilno and Lwów (now Vilnius and Lviv) as two major centres for the arts, played a special role in these developments. This was also a region in which Jewish tradition and the mystic movement of Hasidism thrived. The Kresy were a cultural trysting-place for numerous ethnic and national groups whose achievements were inspiring each other. The works of Bruno Schulz
Bruno Schulz
Bruno Schulz was a Polish writer, fine artist, literary critic and art teacher born to Jewish parents, and regarded as one of the great Polish-language prose stylists of the 20th century. Schulz was born in Drohobycz, in the province of Galicia then part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and spent...

, Bolesław Leśmian, and Józef Czechowicz were written there. In the south of Poland, Zakopane
Zakopane
Zakopane , is a town in southern Poland. It lies in the southern part of the Podhale region at the foot of the Tatra Mountains. From 1975 to 1998 it was in of Nowy Sącz Province, but since 1999 it has been in Lesser Poland Province. It had a population of about 28,000 as of 2004. Zakopane is a...

 was the birthplace of the avant-garde works of Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz (Witkacy). And, last but not least, there was Władysław Reymont awarded 1924 Nobel prize in literature for his novel Chłopi (The Peasants).

After the Second World War many Polish writers found themselves in exile, with many of them clustered around the Paris-based "Kultura" publishing venture run by Jerzy Giedroyc
Jerzy Giedroyc
Jerzy Giedroyc was a Polish writer and political activist....

. The group of emigre writers included Witold Gombrowicz
Witold Gombrowicz
Witold Marian Gombrowicz was a Polish novelist and dramatist. His works are characterized by deep psychological analysis, a certain sense of paradox and an absurd, anti-nationalist flavor...

, Gustaw Herling-Grudziński
Gustaw Herling-Grudzinski
Gustaw Herling-Grudziński was a Polish writer, journalist, essayist and soldier. He is best known for writing a personal account of life in the Soviet gulag - A World Apart.-Biography:...

, Czesław Miłosz, and Sławomir Mrożek.

Zbigniew Herbert
Zbigniew Herbert
Zbigniew Herbert was an influential Polish poet, essayist, drama writer, author of plays, and moralist. A member of the Polish resistance movement – Home Army during World War II, he is one of the best known and the most translated post-war Polish writers...

, Tadeusz Różewicz
Tadeusz Rózewicz
Tadeusz Różewicz is a Polish poet and writer.Różewicz belongs to the first generation born and educated after Poland regained its independence in 1918. His youthful poems were published in 1938...

, Czesław Miłosz, and Wisława Szymborska are among the most outstanding 20th century Polish poets, including novelists and playwrights Witold Gombrowicz
Witold Gombrowicz
Witold Marian Gombrowicz was a Polish novelist and dramatist. His works are characterized by deep psychological analysis, a certain sense of paradox and an absurd, anti-nationalist flavor...

, Sławomir Mrożek, and Stanisław Lem (science fiction). The long list includes Hanna Krall
Hanna Krall
Hanna Krall is a Polish writer.-Childhood:Krall is of Jewish origin. During World War II she lost some of her close relatives. She survived the war only because she was hidden from the Nazis.-Journalism:...

 whose reportage focuses mainly on the war-time Jewish experience, and Ryszard Kapuściński
Ryszard Kapuscinski
Ryszard Kapuściński was a Polish journalist and writer whose dispatches in book form brought him a global reputation. Also a photographer and poet, he was born in Pińsknow in Belarusin the Kresy Wschodnie or eastern borderlands of the second Polish Republic, into poverty: he would say later that...

 with books translated into many languages.
  • Polish Nobel Prize in Literature
    Nobel Prize in Literature
    Since 1901, the Nobel Prize in Literature has been awarded annually to an author from any country who has, in the words from the will of Alfred Nobel, produced "in the field of literature the most outstanding work in an ideal direction"...

     laureates
    • Henryk Sienkiewicz
      Henryk Sienkiewicz
      Henryk Adam Aleksander Pius Sienkiewicz was a Polish journalist and Nobel Prize-winning novelist. A Polish szlachcic of the Oszyk coat of arms, he was one of the most popular Polish writers at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, and received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1905 for his...

       (1905)
    • Władysław Reymont (1924)
    • Czesław Miłosz (1980)
    • Wisława Szymborska (1996)
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