Talk:Wojciech Korfanty

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I would dispute that the reference to the "Freeciv" player of the same name should be at the bottom of the article. At the very least I would recommend that the sentence in question be clarified by inserting the words "W. K. is the pseudonym of one of the..." (unless the player's real name is actually W.K. which I do doubt very much.)

Normally, you would create a new article adding a specification in brackets (such as "W.K. (Politician)" and "W.K. (Freeciv player)". However, although I may be underinformed as to the latter's significance to his own special interest community, I daresay that this is not at all a proper place for explanations of this kind. So let's remove the reference altogether.

--Thorsten1 18:36, 23 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Wojciech Korfanty is just a name of a leader you can choose when you play as the Silesian nation. I agree that such an information surely isn't significant enough to be in an encyclopedia.
So, I'll wait some time and then remove it unless my intention is opposed. -- Sandius 13:30, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I removed the sentence from the article. -- Sandius 20:32, 19 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Oh guys, again a polish propaganda article... silesia was a GERMAN province... and what ever happend it is not RETURNED or RESTORED to poland... it is an annexion against the treaty of versailles, broken by organized force through polish nationalists like korfanty...

the provinces are not called warmia, gdansk etc... it were GERMAN provinces... East Prussia for example... the city is called DANZIG in english not GDANSK and it was the capital of West Prussia... but i am tired fighting against all this polish propagandry... :( it would be nice if any one could write articles not directly from a polish history book...

Molobo's edits [1][edit]

Molobo, your edits are unacceptable. Rather than reverting immediately, I will comment here first and give you an opportunity to present your rationale. I am pessimistic about reaching a compromise, given mine and other's previous experience with you, but that doesn't mean we do not have to try.

The main problem about your edits is their somewhat flowery, un-encyclopaedic style. First off, about K. as "national hero" - we are not here to decide who is a "hero" and who isn't. This is a normative, and inherently POV-ed question. The fact is that K. was considered a hero by some of his contemporaries, and most other people after his death. That fact, however, was already in the article, in its proper chronological place. For a significant part of his lifetime, K. was not a hero, but a persona non grata in public life. He was in opposition to Piłsudski, who a majority of Poles supported (grudgingly or otherwise), and following P. and considering K. a hero was mutually exclusive. His elevation to official "hero" status ultimately commenced after 1945 - and ironically, it was initiated by communists, something which K. probably wouldn't have appreciated much.

"He fought to protect Polish people from discrimination in the form of forced Germanisation policy pursued by Germany in Upper Silesia" - this simply is a more flowery and convoluted version of the information already included: "He opposed the policy of Germanisation in Upper Silesia".

"one of the chief advocates of joining Polish inhabited regions of Upper Silesia to Poland after the war." Wrong. He advocated joining the whole of Upper Silesia to Poland. It was practically impossible to distinguish regions inhabited by just Poles or just Germans. They were living next door to each other, and a significant part of the population didn't really care whether they were Polish or German.

"This came as Catholic Centre Party became more focused on the issues of German catholics, and didn't support Polish fight for equal rights." The Centre Party had always been focused on the issues of Catholics, regardless of whether they spoke German or Polish. "Equal rights" for Germans and Poles was simply not an issue for them - equal rights for Protestants and Catholics was: The party was interested in the rights people had on grounds of their faith, not of their nationality. That the Catholic party would be dominated by German Catholics was quite inevitable in a predominantly German speaking country. (Note that while close to 100% of the Polish speakers in the German Empire were Catholics, they formed less than 10% or so of the overall Catholic population.) The point is that previously, many (kind of) Polish-speaking inhabitants of Upper Silesia did not mind this, as being Catholic was more defining for them than being Polish. With time, this began to change, and Korfanty worked hard to reinforce this ongoing change. Note that I am not saying this was bad, as you seem to assume. But is should not be implied that Korfanty's politics were in any way a response to a change in the Centre Party's position. It was the Poles who changed, not the party. Whether this was "good" or "bad" is simply not for us to discuss. If you want to do this, why don't you get one of those free blogs? Who knows, if it's any good, we may include a link to it here.

You changed "pseudo-democratic" and "quasi-dictatorship" as descriptions of the Sanacja government to "government that possesed authoritarian tendencies." Now there is a broad consensus in Polish and international scholarship that Piłsudski's government was far from democratic, even if a democratic facade remained intact. It did not just "possess authoritarian tendencies" - this was a de-facto dictatorship effectively controlled by P. and people loyal to him. In Poland, there is no disagreement over the non-democratic character of P.'s regime. What people disagreed about was whether it was a benevolent dictatorship or not. Many people then and now agree that it was - but that does not make it democratic. By the way, Korfanty, as a Christian Democrat and earlier a comrade of Roman Dmowski's, would have been about the last to call it democratic, with some slight "authoritarian tendencies" perhaps... There was an enormous cleavage between Sanacja on the one hand, and Centrolew on the other hand. Of course, if one is preoccupied with the "Polish-German" political cleavage, one may tend to overlook the Polish domestic cleavage, which was at least as acute at that time. This may explain why you are paradoxically praising Korfanty and downplaying Piłsudski's role as a dictator at the same time. This makes about as much sense as praising Robespierre and Louis XVI because they were both great French leaders. ;)

I hope you will think about what I wrote and reconsider your edits. Here is your chance to demonstrate that you have something valuable to say about internal Polish affairs and are not a Polish-German one trick pony. --Thorsten1 01:11, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

In Poland, there is no disagreement over the non-democratic character of P.'s regime. Sadly the Polish Ministry of Education disagrees with your opinion, and claims the government was combination of authoritarism and democracy. --Molobo 01:18, 7 February 2006 (UTC) "the government was combination of authoritarism and democracy". Of course, there was democracy on the outside and authoritarianism on the inside, so it was a "combination". ;) Seriously, authoriarianism and democracy are mutually exclusive. A government that "combines" both is not democratic by definition. I am pleased to see that the Polish Ministry of Education conforms with my opinion and that of every serious historian. --Thorsten1 02:23, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

Here is your chance to demonstrate that you have something valuable to say about internal Polish affairs Your opinon on Polish matters is quite clear-they are either liberals led by Mazowiecki or Gieremek and nationalist, clerical antisemites on the other side.[2] Hardly an objective view I am afraid Thorsten.Doesn't speak much for your support as objective viewer of Polish internal affairs, and I hope this is just a mistake on your part. --Molobo 01:18, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

Mazowiecki is primarily a Christian Democrat, not a liberal. Also, I do not see how your creative representation of my alleged "opinion on Polish matters" is supposed to relate to Wojciech Korfanty in any way. I would really appreciate it if you could remain on topic or at least anywhere near it.--Thorsten1 02:23, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

As to Catholic Party[edit]

Viewing the Polish deputies as a political threat and fearing that a more pro-Polish attitude would lose the very nationallyminded German Catholics of Upper Silesia to the National Liberals or Conservatives following the 1893 elections, the Silesian leadership of the Center Party embarked on an aggressive campaign against the Polish challengers. Labeling the Polish candidates explicitly as "Poles" and - playing on fears of Social Democracy - as social revolutionaries and anti-clericalists, Porsch proclaimed that the position of the Center in Upper Silesia was "endangered." As Huene's defeat had shown, the Center was engaged in a power struggle with an "anti-Center current" whose "special danger lies in that in Upper Silesian . . . the linguistic opposition or, as one now says, national opposition covers itself with the opposition of possessing and not possessing."81 By contrast, Porsch offered his vision of a united Center party at an 1895 party meeting in Breslau:

We in the Center have not, up to this point, recognized a distinction between Germans and Poles, no distinction of language, of class, of occupation. The instant that you introduce such distinctions, in that instant the foundation on which the Center stands and on which alone the Center can be great collapses.82

Porsch did not recognize national principles where Polish demands were concerned; however, to maintain support among German Catholics he actively sought to counter the claims of opponents in the national parties that "by standing up for the native languages [we] are standing up for the nationalities." Like Windthorst a decade earlier, Forsch emphasized the confessional nature of this support.83 But Forsch went well beyond Windthorst's judicious support for German nationalist goals. Indeed, Forsch made special efforts to illustrate that, although he opposed the anti-Polish measures, he was not blind to the danger that Polish nationalists posed to Deutschtum. Commenting on the issue of colonization in an 1898 article in the Schlesische Volkszeitung he noted that the Center did not disapprove of Germans' self-defense "against the advances of Polentum" nor did they deny "that Polish encroachments and outrages should be turned back." Rather, he wrote, "we disapprove of the means by which one proceeds against the Poles," and thus the "national conviction" of German Catholics should not be questioned.84 Porsch's disdain for Polish nationalists and the Polish interests within the Center, as well as the rhetorical tightrope he walked by denying the legitimacy of Polish national feeling while defending that of German Catholics, did little to bridge the growing gap between Polish and German interests in Upper Silesia.

The decisive moment in the collapse of Center-Polish co-operation was the school language crisis.88 In 1900, Bulow's elimination of the last remaining Polish religious instruction in the elementary grades generated a series of spontaneous, local school strikes that began the following year. As the government remained intransigent and civil disobedience grew, the National Democrats and the Populists actively began to support the resistance, and the campaign spread. By the fall of 1906 the protests had escalated into a general school strike, directly involving over 93,000 children and attracting the attention and support of Poles throughout the Prussian East. The Prussian government's refusal to compromise and its harsh suppression of the protests in the summer of 1907 further exacerbated the general Polish dissatisfaction with the Prussian state.

The widespread, militant response despite the patent illegality of the strikes suggests that this campaign struck a deep chord among Prussian Poles, serving, in the words of John Kulczycki, as a "hothouse for the growth of Polish nationalism."89 And because the Polish church hierarchy vociferously supported and participated in the strikes, Bulow's policies served to further cement the alliance of Polish nationalism and Polish Catholicism throughout the Prussian East.90 Much more ambivalent in their support for the Poles, the Center and the German Catholic hierarchy opposed the language policy but simultaneously condemned the strikes as unlawful.

Polish nationalists were frustrated that the leadership of the Center party had not been able - and seemed not to have made a significant effort - to mitigate the effects of anti-Polish measures, that it had denigrated resistance against those measures, and that it even denied that Poles in Upper Silesia had common interests or a common identity that deserved attention. As a result, they settled on a complete break with the Catholic party that no longer seemed to represent Polish Catholics. --Molobo 01:23, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

Molobo posted the above to my talk page first, so I replied there (User_talk:Thorsten1#As_to_Catholic_party). --02:27, 7 February 2006 (UTC)
As per my above statement, I have refrained from further edits to this article so far. Instead, I explained my objections to Molobo's removals of my "strange formulations" and invited him to try and achieve a consensus on this talk page first. He did not accept this proposal - his only response was to copy and paste the above desert of third-party text, here and to my talk page (where he also posted some stereotypical, repetitive assertions). When a (Polish!) IP user reverted, Molobo reverted again - leaving the edit summary empty and marking his own edit as "minor". In addition, he returned to his habit of denouncing me as "anti-Polish" and reported me as having "insulted Poland" in the German article on Adam Michnik (totally unrelated to this one) to the Polish Wikipedians' notice board. I think this is highly symptomatic of Molobo's overall editing style and interpersonal behaviour on Wikipedia. --Thorsten1 22:44, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

If you feel offended I apologize, but I pointed out that your view on political life in Poland is very biased based on your claims that parties in Poland are divided between liberals of Mazowiecki type and nationalists antisemites. --Molobo 22:57, 8 February 2006 (UTC) In addition, he returned to his habit of denouncing me as "anti-Polish" This is claim however Thorsten is fabricated where did I label you so ? --Molobo 22:59, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

and invited him to try and achieve a consensus on this talk page first. He did not accept this proposal I accepted the proposal on your talk page. I will move the discussion here then If you feel so strongly offended. --Molobo 22:59, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

"I pointed out that your view on political life in Poland is very biased based on your claims that parties in Poland are divided between liberals of Mazowiecki type and nationalists antisemites". Even if this was true - which it obviously isn't - what does it have to do with Korfanty's opposition to Piłsudski's regime?
"This is claim however Thorsten is fabricated where did I label you so". On several occasions that I do not have the nerve to look up now. Some had to do with the Polish Black Book that I was listed in after not agreeing with you, if I recall correctly.
"I accepted the proposal on your talk page." My talk page is not this talk page. Discussions about edits to articles belong on the respective talk pages. I can only interpret your avoiding this page as an attempt to restrict the audience of your statements. Secondly, and more importantly, I characterised your response on my talk page above and put a link to it. I do not consider this as a "discussion" about my objections above. --Thorsten1 23:08, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

what does it have to do with Korfanty's opposition to Piłsudski's regime? That you have stron POV views in regards to politics in Poland. --Molobo 23:09, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

So I am unable to see the cordial harmony between Piłsudski and Korfanty because of my "stron POV views" of today's Polish politics? (No answer required).--Thorsten1 23:20, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

You view Polish politics in black and white colours, which makes your claims very questionable. --Molobo 23:30, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

That is exactly what I would say about you. And you have a much longer track records of comments about Polish politics than I will ever have. I tend to look at Polish politics from the POV of a disengaged outsider. --Thorsten1 23:36, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

Then I am sorry but your views are very POVish or uniformed-you divide Polish politics between two camps-liberals of Mazowiecki and national clerical antisemites. For example Bronislaw Wildstein is a political activist that hardly supports Mazowiecki, and according to your edit he would have to be considered nationalist clerical antisemite, because you presented Polish politics as two camps: liberal and nationalist clerical antisemite.He is a good example that your divide isn't proper.They are many currents, faction and ideas in Polish politics. --Molobo 23:40, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

Your allegation is based on your personal interpretation. Quite irrespective of that I'm still waiting for you to make a plausible connection from Wildstein to Korfanty, who we are supposed to discuss here. If you have something interesting to say about Wildstein, simply do so at Talk:Bronisław Wildstein. --Thorsten1 23:52, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

Authoritarian democracy[edit]

Historia Polski 1871-1939 Profesor Roszkowski, Dr. Anna Radziwiłł Warszawa 2000 Polish Ministry of Education, :name the government authoritarian and note on several times that Piłsudski refused to implement a dictatorship. Sorry Thorsten but MEN doesn't agree with you it seems after all. --Molobo 01:35, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

Sorry, but what is this supposed to be - an instruction for Polish teachers of history? ;) If so, I do not feel obliged by this doomed attempt to reconcile Polish raison d'état and historical fact. Of course, Piłsudski never modified the constitutional structure, so Poland remained a democracy on paper. He even withdrew to seemingly marginal cabinet positions after his coup. However, he continued to pull the strings from behind the scenes - nothing significant ever happened without his approval. An opposition, although legally and sometimes physically harassed, continued to exist and participated in elections, however to no real effect. As I already said clearly enough, the facade was democratic, the inner workings were not. Not even Piłsudski's most ardent supporters call him a democrat, neither then nor today. The only point of contention is whether his and his successors' regime worked for the benefit of the people or not. A decisive proportion, if not a majority, of Poles then and now assume it did - especially considering that an Endecja-led regime might have been the alternative. But that does not make the Sanacja regime a democracy. A monarchy remains a monarchy, even if the monarch is popular; the same goes for a dictatorship. Korfanty - which brings us back to the initial point - was an outspoken opponent of Sanacja and not shy to call it a dictatorship. He did not go into exile for no reason, and he was not imprisoned upon his return for no reason. No matter how you look at it - your attempt to praise Korfanty as a national hero and water down Sanacja to a "democratic government with authoritarian tendencies" at the same time is an attempt to square the circle. --Thorsten1 16:38, 9 February 2006 (UTC)


1. Korfanty was born in 1873 in Upper Silesia/Germany. 2. The University of Breslau was not only German administrated, it was a German University in a German City (territory and population). —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:41, 5 December 2007 (UTC)

Molobo's edits once again[edit]

In response to Molobo's statement "Duchy of Warsaw was also a Polish state" ([3]) let me quote from the lead of the Polish article on the Duchy of Warsaw: "Księstwo Warszawskie (fr. Duché de Varsovie) – istniało w latach 1807-1815, formalnie niepodległe, jednak w rzeczywistości jako podporządkowane napoleońskiej Francji, było namiastką państwa polskiego. Władcą suwerennym księstwa był król Saksonii, która wchodziła w skład Związku Reńskiego, będącego protektoratem I Cesarstwa Francuskiego." (translation: "The Duchy of Warsaw, existing 1807-1815, was a formally independent, but in reality subordinated to Napoleonic France, poor substitute for a Polish state. The sovereign ruler of the Duchy was the King of Saxony, which was part of the Confederation of the Rhine, a protectorate of the First French Empire" (emphasis added). Molobo, I suggest you establish your POV in the Polish article first. ;) --Thorsten1 (talk) 07:57, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

A poor substitute, yes, but still a Polish state. Congress Poland was an even poorer substitute, but it is still considered a Polish state. We have refs for the latter as puppet (see CP article), but not for the former. If you have refs that Duchy was also a puppet state, please add it to the relevant article. In any case, I looked over Molobo's edits here and I don't see how either they or your revert relate to this issue? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 08:30, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
"A poor substitute, yes, but still a Polish state." First, in general parlance, a substitute isn't the real thing. Something we call "a poor substitute for X" isn't identicial with X. Sure, you may say "a poor substitute for an argument" to imply that an argument you disagree with or are unable to counter isn't really an argument, so you needn't bother with it. This, however, is ironic usage, and I think we both agree that whoever wrote namiastka (etymologically: "something in place of something else") probably wasn't trying to be ironic. Further, państwo polskie is generally used as meaning an independent Polish state, not just one in which Poles had a degree of influence. That's why states like the Duchy of Warsaw, Congress Poland or the Republic of Kraków are not commonly refered to as "Polish states" that would have legitimately interrupted Poland's period of partition and foreign control. Therefore, Molobo's rationale is, at best, nitpicking. Since you ask, let's have a closer look. The original sentence read: "the restoration of an independent Polish state, which had not existed since 1795, resulted" (emphasis added). In his edit I diffed above, Molobo removed the part "which had not existed since 1795", arguing that "Duchy of Warsaw was also a Polish state". Given its position in the framework of Napoleon's system of satellites. whether or not the Duchy deserves the name "Polish state" is open to debate, but as long as the context is clear, calling it that is defensible. By no stretch of imagination, however, does it deserve the epithet "independent". To be sure, the contemporaries welcomed its establishment because they preferred French hegemony to Russian hegemony. But that's a far cry from any sort of independence. This is common knowledge, and see no need to get involved in any other articles because of it. --Thorsten1 (talk) 18:27, 11 June 2008 (UTC)