Values in Poland: New Book

Edited by Mirosława MARODY and with contribution by Joanna KONIECZNA-SAŁAMATIN, Maja SAWICKA, Sławomir MANDES, Grażyna KACPROWICZ, Krzysztof BULKOWSKI, and Jerzy BARTKOWSKI, the new book SPOŁECZEŃSTWO NA ZAKRĘCIE. Zmiany postaw i wartości Polaków w latach 1990–2018 (SOCIETY IN A BEND Changes in attitudes and values of Poles between 1990-2018) includes studies on value change in Poland.

The thirtieth anniversary of the political transformation is an excellent moment to take stock of the changes in attitudes and values of our society. Such an opportunity was created by the long-term participation of the Polish team in the international European Values Study (EVS). Repeated every nine years on representative samples of Poles offers a unique opportunity to follow the changes taking place in their consciousness.

In this book we set ourselves the task of systematically reconstructing the process of evolution of values in Polish society. We then ask to what extent its direction is consistent with the overarching goal of the systemic transformation, which was to build a liberal-democratic social order. We also try to answer the question what are the social sources of political divisions in contemporary Poland by analyzing arguments in favor of different hypotheses explaining the phenomenon of populism and proposing an additional hypothesis of ‘banks of anger’.

In the analysis we use not only data from the EVS questionnaire survey, but also information obtained from focused group interviews, in-depth individual interviews and fragments of the analysis of selected social media content.
from the Introduction

The analyses and the presentation are carried out in a fair and clear way. And above all, they produce interesting results. Among them, the following can be pointed out:

  • The visible secularization of Polish society over time,
  • Continued relatively weak interest in politics,
  • The small role of traditional socio-demographic factors in defining right-wing and left-wing society.
    (from a review by prof. dr hab. Andrzej Rychard)

The authors’ efforts to interweave the description of captured statistical relationships with the analysis of qualitative material should be appreciated. Sometimes qualitative descriptions are only illustrations of slings reconstructed statistically in trends, at other times they provide an understanding of the mechanisms behind them, at other times they suggest other interpretative possibilities.
(from a review by dr hab. Przemysław Sadura)