After the Fall: The Pursuit of Democracy in Central Europe

By Jeffrey C. Goldfarb | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 11
The Church Against the State

In the early 1970s in Poland, they used to tell a joke about Cardinal Wyszyński conducting a Mass. One man is standing when he should be kneeling. Someone tugs at his sleeve. "Kneel down; why are you standing?" "It's all right, I'm Jewish." "Then what are you doing in church?" "I too am against the authorities."

In those days, the Polish church was the locus for civil resistance. It provided a widespread institutional alternative to communism; the church's struggle for independence during the communist period was the most sustained and effective resistance to the dictates of the party- state. Two great and powerful systems of authority battled against each other, but neither won. The church never defeated the communists outright. (As Stalin once cynically observed, it could not do so without any military divisions.) But the party-state did not win either. To buy some legitimacy in 1956, to give some substance to a more

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After the Fall: The Pursuit of Democracy in Central Europe
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface xi
  • INTRODUCTION Then and Now 1
  • I POLITICS 11
  • Chapter 1 Civil Society "As If" 13
  • Chapter 2 Post-Totalitarian Politics 28
  • Chapter 3 Ideology Ends Again 37
  • Chapter 4 What's Left? What's Right? 52
  • II LEADERSHIP 63
  • Chapter 5 Havel to the Castle 65
  • Chapter 6 Democratic Dialogue 74
  • Chapter 7 Wałęsa: Washington or Piłsudski? 86
  • III NATION 97
  • Chapter 8 the Problem of Nationalism: on the Road to Harmony with the Minister of the Interior 99
  • Chapter 9 the Dialectics of False Solutions 110
  • Chapter 10 Europe 119
  • IV RELIGION 139
  • Chapter 11 the Church Against the State 141
  • Chapter 12 the Jewish Question 155
  • V THE ECONOMY 167
  • Chapter 13 Anti-Economic Practices 169
  • Chapter 14 on the Road to Capitalism? 185
  • Chapter 15 History and Class Consciousness 196
  • VI CULTURE 213
  • Chapter 16 Against Despair 215
  • Chapter 17 the Institutionalization of Cultural Imagination 227
  • EPILOGUE Toward a New Civilized Social Order 238
  • Bibliographic Note 253
  • Index 257
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