A conference of Polish history scholars ended on Saturday, June 30. The event was attended by nearly 600 academics from all over the world.
The international conference was organized by the Polish Historical Society, the Museum of Polish History in Warsaw and Jagiellonian University.
During the conference, an award entitled, ?Pro Historia Polonorum,? (?Pro Polish History?) recognized the best foreign language book written on the subject of Polish history. The symbol of the award is a statue of Gall Anonym, a 13th Century chronicler (likely French) at the Polish court.
This year?s winner of the award is Professor Timothy Snyder from Yale University. His winning book is entitled ?Sketches from a Secret War: A Polish Artist?s Mission to Liberate Soviet Ukraine? concerning the life and heroic activities of Henryk Jozefski, an artist and soldier and one of the founders of Polish-Ukrainian bilateral relations before World War II.
Another famous historian, Professor Norman Davies, was awarded a special prize for propagating Polish history around the world.
?The interest in this conference has been beyond our expectations,? says Dr. Katarzyna Kacprzak, co-organizer of the conference. ?It is the first world-scale conference on Polish history allowing scholars to exchange experiences, to get to know each other. Until now, everyone thought that Polish history was only dealt with by Poles, a couple of hot heads and Norman Davies. From now on, that will be different.?
There is a long list of reasons why foreign historians study Polish history.
?I study Polish history because it?s the history of a neighbor. Without it, German history cannot be properly understood,? says Professor Michael Moeller from Germany.
?Poles have an extraordinarily interesting history, only they are taught it in a very school-like manner. That?s why they don?t like it,? says Professor Timothy Snyder.The next conference is planned to take place in two or three years.
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- Interview with Timothy Snyder this year’s winner of the Pro Historia Polonorum award