18.12.2018 Thuesday

City-mania in books

Books published in autumn and winter as part of the Wrocław Publication Programme show the unknown side of Wrocław to the readers. They present the city through letters and memories of people who come to the city, works of art and everyday use objects, cards with farewell texts, as well as from the perspective of the literary world and puppet theatre backstage.


Marta Śleziak – Klepsydry na tle innych tekstów pożegnalnych

ATUT Publishing House
release date: November 2018

In her linguistic research, Marta Śleziak once again undertook the analysis of occasional prints in the first years following the war. In her previous book, she described the language of posters and leaflets created in the Recovered Territories. Her latest publication brings the topic of death closer to readers, focusing on obituaries, funeral speeches and information about funerals published in press. This scientific book is a fascinating journey back in time. The author meticulously describes the appearance and content of obituaries, she also focuses on propaganda messages in funeral speeches and press articles. Klepsydry… will be appreciated by all readers interested in the history of Poland and the Recovered Territories, in particular Wrocław and Lower Silesia.



Anna Markowska – „Sztuka podręczna Wrocławia”

Anna Markowska – Sztuka podręczna Wrocławia
illustrated by: Paweł Jarodzki
Anex Publishing House
release date: January 2019

A compendium of knowledge about contemporary art prepared in a non-obvious form of a lexicon. The starting point for the story about the history of art in Wrocław are objects – from the radio, which was supposed to promote young artists at BWA Awangarda, through the Adler car given to Eugeniusz Geppert by the authorities, to Kazimierz Głaz’s quasi-screens. The book’s departure from the traditional alphabetical order, discriminating terms starting with “W” is also a conscious decision, which also serves as a starting point for deliberations on art. With a great sense of humour and a healthy dose of irony, the author brings up anecdotes about the most interesting works of art from Wrocław and their creators. As the artists themselves say – if you don’t die laughing, you will become an expert in Wrocław’s art.



„Orbis Wratislaviae. Wrocław w relacjach dawnych i współczesnych”

election and compilation: Krzysztof Ruchniewicz, Marek Zybura
Via Nova Publishing House
release date: November 2018

The book combines the chronicle of the most important events in Wrocław (from the 15th to the 21st century), a collection of accounts from the visits to our city and an attempt to capture its unique genius loci. This is a fascinating compilation of praises – including poems – which the visitors and residents from other parts of Europe, who have been visiting and settling down in Wrocław for centuries, wrote in their letters. The book also features very personal witness accounts of some of the most difficult moments in the life of the city, including Festung Breslau, first years after the war (fragments of Hugo Steinhaus’ memoirs) and the flood of the millennium. It is particularly worth looking at fragments in which German Breslau is described by famous Poles, including Julian Ursyn Niemcewicz and Frederic Chopin. This beautifully illustrated album is a must-have book in the library of every local patriot.



Jacek Bierut – „Przesieka”

J Publishing House
release date: November 2018

The latest book by the Wrocław-based poet and prose writer is a cross-section of his essays – both ones that have never been published before, as well as those published earlier in magazines and on the Internet. The author examines the condition of contemporary writing. Particular attention should be paid to texts presenting local literary life. While introducing the readers to artists associated with Wrocław, the book focuses both on the greats – Olga Tokarczuk and Tadeusz Różewicz, as well as on the artists who are still young, outstanding and still working to be recognised. The author does not shy away from difficult subjects, and he can be critical of phenomena to which he cannot agree. It is a book for all those interested in the latest events from the world of Wrocław artists, trends and tendencies in contemporary writing, as well as for those who appreciate the beautiful Polish language and playing with form.


Wiesław Hejno – „Mój teatr”

ATUT Publishing House
release date: November 2018

Wiesław Hejno’s memoirs and analytical essays bring the reader closer to the world of theatre, puppet theatre in particular, which is probably its most underestimated form. The author, who has been a lecturer at the National Academy of Theatre Arts and a long-term director and head of the Wrocław Puppet Theatre shares his thoughts and insights on the role of actor, director, creator and viewer. He guides the reader through the history of local stages and universities, often complementing it with stories from behind the scenes. Particularly interesting is the part devoted to various aspects of puppet theatre – history and changes in the way the puppets themselves are made. The author also answers the question why many people conflate puppet theatre with plays for children. Short forms included in Mój teatr will appeal to theatre lovers – not only fans of puppet theatre, and definitely not only for children.

Collected by: Magda Brumirska-Zielińska

The article comes from the Wrocław Cultural Guide winter edition. 

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