As each of our researchers conducts their research in two different geographical contexts, they always share one country together. That is why they can meet up during their fieldwork and discuss their research on site. It happened in summer in Slovakia where Karin and Michal had an opportunity to meet, and it took place also in October 2023. This time, our researchers Karolina and Michal met in Goleniów and Szczecin.
On the first day, Michal showed Karolina around Goleniów and presented her his findings. They started in the forest-like park named after the Polish composer and politician Ignacy Jan Paderewski right next to the train station. The park is home to many monuments commemorating various historical events or persons, Polish as well German ones. Thus, some of them are recycled, i.e. made from older monuments. Later that day they ended up exploring one more recycled monument that can be found on the premises of the former German cemetery (nowadays a park).
In Goleniów, our researchers cooperate with local history enthusiasts and artists in the project Goleniowskie Fotohistorie. Based on photographs and family histories this project sheds light on the post-WWII history of Goleniów and its Polish settlers. While in Goleniów, Karolina conducted a video interview for the project. Furthermore, our researchers met with other team members and discussed currents issues as well as future aims of the local project.
Last but not least, Karolina and Michal looked for and found some formerly German fruit trees in the cityscape of Goleniów.
On the next day, the partial team meeting continued in Szczecin, where our researchers visited two museums as a part of the preparation for the 6th Congress on Polish Studies in Dresden (more information coming soon). Karolina and Michal focused on the way the museums deal with formerly German objects in their exhibitions. First, they visited the Szczecin History Museum and afterwards the Dialogue Centre “Przełomy”. Both exhibitions have different concepts. While the Szczecin History Museum has a rather traditional exhibition dominated by a large number of original objects from its collection, the “Przełomy” overwhelms the visitor with multimedia and focuses on evoking emotions. In both museums there are formerly German objects as a part of the exhibitions. However, only in a few cases the visitor gets an information about the origin of the objects or their purpose as a part of the exhibition. This creates a rather blurry image of the pre-WWII history of the city. Michal plans to discuss this issue in his upcoming presentation in Dresden.