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Krzysztof Kowalski, Łucja Piekarska-Duraj, Barbara Törnquist-Plewa (red.), Diversity and Unity. How Heritage Becomes the Narrative for Europe’s Future, thematic volume of „Politeja” 2018, nr 1, vol. 52

okładka książki Diversity and Unity. How Heritage Becomes the Narrative for Europe’s Future

The volume deals with question of the diversity and unity of heritage which might become the narrative for Europe's future. To tackle this broad area of reflection in Poland and Sweden, the thematic volume of “Politeja” proposes an investigation of the use of the past in these two countries by looking at how it has been (re)created using European symbolic resources, namely the repository of images and ideas from which European collective identity is constructed.

This volume of “Politeja” brings together texts which show how the narratives and representations of the past in the Polish and Swedish contexts play a role in influencing the present of these two countries. We intend to pose the question of a European future built on the basis of a common European past and especially one which stems from and exceeds its unification. We will also pursue the following lines of enquiry: whether the founding mythology of Europe also applies to its periphery; how heritage helps to reinforce the cultural continuity of the Old Continent and thus ensures a stable future for its citizens; how those citizens may be engaged in activity to build a supranational community based on commonly held values.

Some museums, open air museums, war cemeteries and Holocaust memorials serve as interesting examples of the unification and pursuit of a European community. Their concrete analysis permits the identification of the processes underpinning the construction of a common, European image of the past which, in the Polish and Swedish context, has been transformed from unmediated memory into abstract, European symbolic resources. It also fosters the consideration of the strength and role of the unity and diversity in the interpretation of the past and its utilization in particular situations in Poland and Sweden.

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