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Democratisation as a mental attitude


Democratisation is a process of continual advancement
Jacek Kuroń Social activist
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[Q] You've told us here that many people had reservations about sitting down at the Round Table with these people. They didn't pluck this out of thin air, did they?

I can't even understand your question. It's obvious that people love, hate, like, dislike, and so it's clear that martial law itself must have elicited hatred in our people towards those others. So they found it hard to talk with them but this is a question about different emotional states.

[Q] What if this time you lose?

Pardon me but what do you mean by 'What if this time you lose'? I'm very sorry but the kind of reasoning that's behind your question makes me laugh. It's the idea that we try, we lose, we try, we lose. That's completely untrue. We're constantly moving forward because even when we have to retreat, we never retreat beyond the point of departure. There are many things that could possibly be revoked following the events since the Round Table, from its beginnings until now, but we will never go back to how things were before then. So that's not how it is, from that point of view, it's not a matter of win-lose because only uprisings are won or lost. A social proceeding is something you never lose, a social movement is always pure gain. It's only a matter of achieving more or achieving less.

[Q] Mówiłeś tutaj o tym, że przecież wiele osób miało opory, żeby siąść z tymi ludźmi do Okrągłego Stołu. Nie brałeś tego z powietrza, prawda?

Ja nie rozumiem nawet pytania. Jest przecież jasne, że... Jest przecież jasne, że ludzie kochają, nienawidzą, lubią, nie lubią. Jest więc jasne, że już choćby sam stan wojenny musiał w wielu ludziach naszych wywołać niechęć czy nienawiść do tamtych. No więc, że im było trudno z nimi rozmawiać, ale to jest pytanie o różne stany uczuciowe no.

[Q] Jeżeli tym razem się przegra?

No to przepraszam, co to znaczy jeśli się tym razem przegra?

Przepraszam... Ja przepraszam Cię bardzo, ale ten typ myślenia, który się za tym kryje wywołuje moje rozbawienie. Bowiem jest to ten pomysł, że my próbujemy, przegrywamy, próbujemy, przegrywamy. A to w ogóle nie prawda. My nieustannie postępujemy do przodu, bo nawet jak przychodzi cofnięcie to to cofnięcie nigdy nie cofa się poza punkt wyjścia. Już wiele rzeczy być może można cofnąć z tego co się zdarzyło od Okrągłego Stołu... początku Okrągłego Stołu do dziś, ale już nie cofniemy się w stan poprzedzający Okrągły Stół. Więc to nie ma tak... z tego punktu widzenia nie ma tak przegra... wygra, to tylko powstania się przegrywa albo wygrywa. Proces społeczny to to się nie przegrywa nigdy. Ruch społeczny zawsze jest to zysk czysty. Można tylko osiągnąć więcej albo mniej.

The late Polish activist, Jacek Kuroń (1934-2004), had an influential but turbulent political career, helping transform the political landscape of Poland. He was expelled from the communist party, arrested and incarcerated. He was also instrumental in setting up the Workers' Defence Committee (KOR) and later became a Minister of Labour and Social Policy.

Listeners: Marcel Łoziński Jacek Petrycki

Film director Marcel Łoziński was born in Paris in 1940. He graduated from the Film Directing Department of the National School of Film, Television and Theatre in Łódź in 1971. In 1994, he was nominated for an American Academy Award and a European Film Academy Award for the documentary, 89 mm from Europe. Since 1995, he has been a member of the American Academy of Motion Picture Art and Science awarding Oscars. He lectured at the FEMIS film school and the School of Polish Culture of Warsaw University. He ran documentary film workshops in Marseilles. Marcel Łoziński currently lectures at Andrzej Wajda’s Master School for Film Directors. He also runs the Dragon Forum, a European documentary film workshop.

Cinematographer Jacek Petrycki was born in Poznań, Poland in 1948. He has worked extensively in Poland and throughout the world. His credits include, for Agniezka Holland, Provincial Actors (1979), Europe, Europe (1990), Shot in the Heart (2001) and Julie Walking Home (2002), for Krysztof Kieslowski numerous short films including Camera Buff (1980) and No End (1985). Other credits include Journey to the Sun (1998), directed by Jesim Ustaoglu, which won the Golden Camera 300 award at the International Film Camera Festival, Shooters (2000) and The Valley (1999), both directed by Dan Reed, Unforgiving (1993) and Betrayed (1995) by Clive Gordon both of which won the BAFTA for best factual photography. Jacek Petrycki is also a teacher and a filmmaker.

Tags: Round Table

Duration: 1 minute, 58 seconds

Date story recorded: 1987

Date story went live: 12 June 2008