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Reconciliation in Bloodlands

Assessing Actions and Outcomes in Contemporary Central-Eastern Europe

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Edited By Jacek Kurczewski

Central-Eastern Europe, in the mid-20 th century, was a scene of Holocaust, mass killings, war, deportations and forced resettlements under the competing totalitarian invasions and afterwards. It was also the area where churches, politicians and citizens were engaged in reconciliation between antagonized religions and nations. This book presents several attempts to heal relations between Poles, Jews, Germans, Czechs, Ukrainians, Russians and Latvians as well as between Catholics, Protestants and Mariavites. Re-conciliatory practices of John Paul II and other Catholic leaders as well as Protestant churches are analysed in the first part of the book. Most of the remaining studies are focused on particular localities in Upper Silesia, Cieszyn Silesia, former Polish Livland and on the Polish-Ukrainian borderland. These detailed contributions combine sociological methods with anthropological insight and historical context. The authors are sociologists, psychologists and theologians and this leads to a fully interdisciplinary approach in the assessment of the recent state of inter-group relations in the region as well as in the proposed theory of peacebuilding and reconciliation.
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The Reconciliation Through A Marriage: A Comparative Study of Marital Selection in Two Polish Bi-denominational Communities

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This chapter describes the reconciliation processes in bi-denominational communities as reflected in the marital selection patterns and patterns of marital life led by religiously mixed couples in a comparative perspective. History of the formation of the described bi-denominational identities in both global and local dimensions serves as a framework for the interpeting of processes of family life. This, together with the history of institutional and folk – or ‘practical’ – ecumenism in Poland forms a background to the research. Both the historical processes of rupture and ecumenical-comparative tendencies are reflected in the aspects of family life analyzed in the second part.

The qualitative study of reconciliation in two local bi-denominational communities in Poland were made between 2004 and 2011: in a town of Stryków in central Poland, which has two parishes – Roman Catholic and an Old Catholic Mariavite Church, and in the village of Goleszów in the region of Cieszyn Silesia, which has two parishes as well: a Roman Catholic one and an Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession one or, shortly, Lutheran. In both sites, my investigation was part of a broader empirical research conducted by the Chair of Sociology and Anthropology of Customs and Law (Institute of Applied Social Sciences, University of Warsaw) with the significant help of students, thanks to whom we were able to carry out also quantitative studies (2007 in Stryków, 2008 in Goleszów)1. This is of particular significance, as the determination of the general patterns of marriage selection and...

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