You can now find it in on-line stores, and soon it will also be available in the best book stores in Poland! Życie literackie w Krakowie, an inspiring journey back in time starting with the cafés in the period of Young Poland, through the legendary venues of the Polish People’s Republic to the alternative cyber-culture of the 21st century, with Jacek Olczyk discussing literature created in Krakow over the course of the last 120 years. This is yet another book published under patronage of Krakow – UNESCO City of Literature.
The publication is a result of Jacek Olczyk’s research, spanning several years. He went through diaries, letters, as well as good and bad press in order to create this panorama, the first of its kind in the long history of the city. A panorama comprising tasty gossip, colourful speculations, denunciations, discussions and arguments, ups and downs, fighting for freedom and for a table in a fashionable venue – everything that you would never find in a scientific article or a school book. This is a story of a great and not-so-great literature created by the residents, lovers and enemies of Krakow across over 120 years.
The book can successfully serve as a literary guide to the cultural capital of Poland, which leads the reader through the trail of not only the most important aspects of Polish literature, while also allowing them to take a sneak peek behind the scenes.
Jacek Olczyk is a literature historian, obtained a post-graduate degree at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow and at INALCO in Paris. In 2008-2012 he worked as a Polish teacher at the Blaise Pascal University in Clermont-Ferrand (France). Laureate of the Scholarship of the Minister of Culture and National Heritage in 2013. Author of Reading Małopolska (Krakow, 2012). Translator of works by Georges Perec.
An excerpt from Życie literackie w Krakowie:
“Although it is an often forgotten fact, literary life is a part of the literary history, comprising not only the most outstanding works and giant volumes containing literary works ordered with encyclopaedic diligence by professionals and scholars; literary history is not only about the awards, distinctions or privileges awarded to the writers – it is also about everyday events, about everything that happens behind the scenes in the moments of greatness, turbulent times and sometimes even decay. The history of literature also includes a diverse world of writers’ biographies, the diversity and clarity of which makes for a unique atmosphere of a given place. Krakow stands out from among other cities with its remarkably rich history of literary life, from its birth in the times of the Renaissance, through the decades of apathy during the Saxon rule to the end of the 19th century, when the cultural life in the city started flourishing and developing, which continues to the present day. Literary life is like a lens presenting the zeitgeist of an era, and it is thanks to the detailed descriptions of the places, people, events and anecdotes that we can learn more about the rhythm of the cultural heart of Krakow.”
You can find the book at the Art Bunker Gallery Bookstore, the Korporacja Ha!art publishing house on-line store and on Allegro.pl. The book will be also available soon in the best book stores in Poland.