The Kashubs, a regional autochthonous group inhabiting northern Poland, represent one of the most dynamic ethnic groups in Europe. As a community, they have undergone significant political, social, economic and cultural change over the last hundred years. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the Kashubs were citizens of Germany. In the period between the two World Wars they were divided between three political entities: the Republic of Poland, the Free City of Danzig and Germany. During the Second World War, many Kashubs were murdered, and communist Poland subsequently tried to destroy the social ties that bound the community together. The year 1989 finally brought about a democratic breakthrough, at which point the Kashubs became actively engaged in the construction of their regional identity, with the Kashubian language performing a particularly important role.
This volume is the first scholarly monograph on the history, culture and language of the Kashubs to be published in English since 1935. The book systematically explores the most important aspects of Kashubian identity - national, regional, linguistic, cultural and religious - from both historical and contemporary perspectives.
Cezary Obracht-Prondzynski is Professor of Sociology at the University of Gdansk, Poland. He is vice-president of the Kashubian Institute, a former editor-in-chief of Pomerania and editorial secretary for Acta Cassubiana. He is the author of numerous books and articles on Kashubian identity and history, including Kaszubi. Miedzy dyskryminacja a regionalna podmiotowoscia. Tomasz Wicherkiewicz is Adjunct Professor in Linguistics and Chair of Oriental Studies at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. He is a member of the Kashubian Language Board and the Kashubian Institute and carries out field research among minority language communities in Europe and Asia. He is the author of The Making of a Language: The Case of the Idiom of Wilamowice, Southern Poland.
Contents: Cezary Obracht-Prondzynski/Tomasz Wicherkiewicz: Introduction - Jozef Borzyszkowski: A History of the Kashubs until the End of Communism - Jerzy Treder: The Kashubian Language and its Dialects: The Range of Use - Jerzy Treder/Cezary Obracht-Prondzynski: Kashubian Literature: The Phenomenon, its History and its Social Dimension - Tomasz Wicherkiewicz: Language Policy and the Sociolinguistics of Kashubian - Cezary Obracht-Prondzynski: Dilemmas of Modern Kashubian Identity and Culture.