Neither West nor South: Colour and Vernacular Cosmopolitanism in Urban Poland

Kacper Pobłocki

Abstrakt

By exploring the cliché that socialist cities are ‘grey’, this paper seeks to employ the anthropology of colour for unravelling the peculiarities of the East European urban experience. By analyzing the oeuvre of Władysław Reymont, I show that greyness in Eastern Europe has a distinct lineage. It is not, like in the West, a colour poised between black and white, but the very opposite of red. I show how greyness emerged as the central trope for narrating Polish agrarian capitalism, and how after 1945 it was moved onto the urban turf. Greyness became salient because it captured the very essence of the contradictions of nascent urban Poland: a blend of freedom and oppression, equality and hierarchy, solemnity and joy. I describe these conflicting meanings of greyness and show how colour suddenly became the fulcrum of the struggle to generate an urban experience beyond capitalism and socialism that would be East European and cosmopolitan at the same time.

Słowa kluczowe: colour, communism, greyness, urbanization, capitalism, Eastern Europe, public space, everyday life, cosmopolitanism
References

Brzostek B., Za progiem. Codzienność w przestrzeni publicznej Warszawy lat 1955–1970, Trio, Warszawa 2007.

Campanella T.J., The Concrete Dragon, Princeton Architectural Press, Princeton 2008.

Commaroff J., Commaroff J., Theory from the South: Or How Euro-America Is Evolving toward Africa, Paradigm, London 2011.

Crowley D., Warsaw, Reaktion, London 2003.

Crowley D., Warsaw’s Shops, Stalinism and the Thaw, [in:] S.E. Reid, D. Crowley (eds.), Style and Socialism: Modernity and Material Culture in Post-War Eastern Europe, Berg, Oxford 2000.

Dunn E.C., Privatizing Poland, Duke University Press, Ithaca 2004.

Elliott L., Atkinson D., Going South: Why Britain Will Have a Third World Economy by 2014, Palgrave Macmillan, London 2012.

Ferguson J., Expectations of Modernity, University of California Press, Berkeley 1999.

Groys B., Art Power, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA 2008.

Holston J., Insurgent Citizenship, Princeton University Press, Princeton 2008.

Kenney P., Rebuilding Poland: Workers and Communists, 1945–1950, Cornell University Press, Ithaca 1997.

Krzywicki A., Poststalinowski karnawał radości, Trio, Warszawa 2009.

Lebow K.A., Public Works, Private Lives: Youth Brigades in Nowa Huta in the 1950s, “Contemporary European History” 2001, no. 10 (2).

Lees A., Lees L.H., Cities and the Making of Modern Europe, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2008.

Marszałek R., Kino rzeczy znalezionych, Słowo/obraz terytoria, Gdańsk 2006.

Mumford L., The City in History, Harcourt, Brace & World, New York 1961.

Pobłocki K., Urban Solemnity and Warped Public Space in Poland, [in:] M. Moskalewicz, W. Przybylski (eds.), Central European Companion to Political Ideas, Central European University Press, Budapest 2014.

Priestland D., The Red Flag, Penguin, London 2009.

Roy A., Ong A. (eds.), Worlding Cities: Asian Experiments and the Art of Being Global, Routledge, London 2011.

Schlögel K., Moscow, Reaktion, London 2005.

Schneider J., Peacocks and Penguins: The Political Economy of European Cloth and Colors, “American Ethnologist” 1978, nr 5 (3).

Sennett R., The Fall of Public Man, Faber and Faber, London 1993.

Springer F., Wanna z kolumnadą, Czarne, Wołowiec 2013.

Szelényi I., Cities under Socialism – and After, [in:] G. Andrusz, M. Harloe, I. Szelényi (eds.), Cities after Socialism: Urban and Regional Change and Conflict in Post-Socialist Societies, Blackwell, Cambridge, MA 1996.

Taussig M.T., What Color Is the Sacred?, Chicago University Press, Chicago 2009.

Yurchak A., Everything Was Forever, until It Was No More, Princeton University Press, Princeton 2006.

Pierwotną wersją czasopisma jest wersja elektroniczna publikowana
kwartalnie w internecie. Czasopismo ukazuje się w sposób ciągły on-line.