Young Communist League of Poland

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Young Communist League of Poland
Związek Młodzieży Komunistycznej w Polsce
Secretary Alfred Lampe
Founded February 22, 1922
Dissolved 1938
Membership 7,000 (1931)
Ideology Marxism-Leninism
Mother party Communist Party of Poland
International affiliation Young Communist International
Newspaper Towarzysz (1922–1936), Towarzysz Młodzieży (1937–1938)

The Young Communist League of Poland (Polish: Związek Młodzieży Komunistycznej w Polsce, abbreviated ZMKwP), in February 1930 renamed as the Communist League of Polish Youth Polish: Komunistyczny Związek Młodzieży Polskiej, abbreviated KZMP), was the youth wing of the interbellum Communist Party of Poland between 1922 and 1938.[1][2] ZMKwP/KZMP was a section of the Young Communist International.[3]

Founding[edit]

The founding congress of ZMKwP was held on March 22, 1922.[1][4][3] Alfred Lampe was elected Secretary of the Central Committee of ZMKwP at the time of its first congress.[2][5] The other members of the Central Committee of ZMKwP were Bronisław Berman, Leon Holcer, Władysław Kniewski, Tadeusz Oppman, Stanisław Teszner, Antoni Werner and Włodzimierz Zawadzki.[5]

Growth[edit]

In 1923 the left opposition of the Polish League of Socialist Youth (ZPMS) joined ZMKwP.[6] Komtsukunft, the youth wing of the Jewish Communist Labour Bund in Poland, merged into ZMKwP in March–April 1923.[2][7] ZMKwP also absorbed dissidents from the Poale Zion Left and Fareynikte factions.[2]

In 1925 ZMKwP organized a pioneer movement for children, Pionier. Later followed the setting up of organization amongst secondary school students.[8]

ZMKwP had some 3,700 members as of June 1926. As of July 1931, membership had increased to around 7,000.[2] KZMP had a larger percentage of Jewish membership than the mother party.[9][10] As of 1930, 51% of KZMP members were Jews, 19% Poles, 18% Ukrainians and 12% Bielorussians.[9][11] The Jewish dominance in the membership hindered expansion between in rural areas, as Jewish-dominated branches in small towns were largely disconnected from the peasantry in the surrounding countrysides.[2] However, by 1933 the ethnic proportions had changed with 33% of KZMP members being Poles, 31% Jews, 19% Bielorussians and 17% Ukrainians.[9] The decline in the percentage of Jewish members corresponded to an increase of recruitment amongst the peasantry. By 1932 50% of KZMP members hailed from the peasantry.[2]

Publication[edit]

The publication Towarzysz ('Comrade') was the organ of the Central Committee of ZMKwP/KZMP, published from Warsaw. In 1937, it changed name to Towarzysz Młodzieży ('Young Comrade').[12][13]

Dissolution[edit]

In 1938 KZMP was dissolved, along with the mother party, by a decision of the Executive Committee of the Communist International.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Kersten, Krystyna. The establishment of Communist rule in Poland, 1943–1948. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991. p. 172
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Cimek, Henryk. Jews in the Polish Communist Movement (1918–1937)
  3. ^ a b Greiner, Piotr. Słownik organizacji młodzieżowych w województwie śląskim w latach 1922–1939. Katowice: Muzeum Śląskie, 1993. p. 48
  4. ^ Topolski, Jerzy, and Olgierd Adrian Wojtasiewicz. An Outline History of Poland. Warsaw: Interpress, 1986. p. 221
  5. ^ a b Nowe drogi, Eds. 1–6. Wydawn. KC Polskiej Partii Robotniczej, 1988. pp. 83–84
  6. ^ Uebersberger, Hans. Jahrbücher für Geschichte Osteuropas. Breslau: Priebatsch's Buchhandlung, 1936. p. 86
  7. ^ Bundist Counterculture in Interwar Poland. Syracuse, N.Y: Syracuse University Press, 2009. pp. 9–10
  8. ^ Suchodolski, Bogdan. Wielka encyklopedia powszechna PWN. Warszawa: Państwowe Wydawn. Naukowe, 1965. p. 781
  9. ^ a b c Diner, Dan, and Jonathan Frankel. Dark Times, Dire Decisions: Jews and Communism. Oxford [u.a.]: Oxford Univ. Press, 2004. p. 19
  10. ^ Gutman, Israel. The Jews of Poland between Two World Wars. Hanover: Published for Brandeis University Press by University Press of New England, 1989. p. 62
  11. ^ Schatz, Jaff. The Generation: The Rise and Fall of the Jewish Communists of Poland. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991. p. 85
  12. ^ Hillebrandt, Bogdan, and Genowefa Słabek. Postępowy ruch młodzieżowy w Polsce: przewodnik bibliograficzny. Warszawa: "Iskry,", 1980. p. 26
  13. ^ Kazimierski, Jozef. Wielkie zaklady przemysłowe Warszawy. Warszawa: Państ. Wydaw. Naukowe, 1978. p. 428