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  • 1.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Anarchism in post-socialism: A case of Polish anarchists2012Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 2.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Anarchist movement in post-socialist context2012Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 3.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Anarchists in Poland – a new generation of the Left?2013Conference paper (Refereed)
  • 4.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    European University Institute.
    Civil society, un-civil society and the socialmovements2009In: Interface: a journal for and about social movements, ISSN 2009-2431, Vol. 1, no 2, p. 166-189Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article discusses the experience of civil society and social movements inCentral and Eastern Europe both before and after the events of 1989. It showshow the different paths to the development of "civil society" as an organisingconcept in the pre-1989 period impacted on experiences after that date, and relates this to broader theoretical debates on the concept. In particular, it argues that the movements of "un-civil society" often fulfil a more substantial political role than the NGOs of "civil society", for a range of reasons. Thearticle draws on a series of interviews conducted with "alter-globalisation" activists in the region

  • 5.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Contention and the civil society2017In: Understanding Central Europe / [ed] Marcin Moskalewiczn & Wojciech Przybylski, London: Routledge, 2017, p. 311-317Chapter in book (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    During the 1980s, the “civil society” concept made a comeback into the main discourse of the social sciences – after in principle being out of use since the mid-19th century – mainly as a consequence of the emergence of pro-democratic movements in Eastern European and Latin American authoritarian states (Kocka 2004: 67). Civil society in Central Europe is not only seen as one of the main forces behind the overthrow of the communist regimes in the region; it was also one of the core concepts of the transformation of 1989. The changes within the structure and form of the civil society in post-communist countries of Central and Eastern Europe reflect, to a large extent, the processes of the post-1989 transformation and the transfiguration of the political. This paper examines the tensions and conflicts within the broadly understood civil society sphere through the perspective of social mobilization and the function of the civil society. It also shows the dynamics of the changes within the sector and compares it with other forms of civic engagement such as grassroots social mobilizations. Finally, this papers deals with few myths about the civil society in post-communist Central Europe that shape the academic and the popular thinking about civil society sector in the region.

  • 6.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Eastern European Social Movements2013In: The Wiley-Blackwell encyclopedia of social and political movements / [ed] David A. Snow, Donatella della Porta, Bert Klandermans & Doug McAdam, Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013, p. 383-388Chapter in book (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Social movements in Eastern Europe have a long history. Despite problems with defining the region, most scholars tend to locate it in the postsocialist countries of Europe, which re-gained independence after the fall of the Iron Curtain. One of the most significant movements in the world during this period was Solidarność, which emerged in Poland in 1980. Solidarność developed from a trade union and reportedly had 9–10 million members (approximately 25% of the population). In the Fall of Nations in 1989/1990 hundreds of thousands of people went into the streets protesting against the communist regimes, and this contributed to the collapse of the Iron Curtain. A large variety of movements evolved from that time, with some becoming quite vibrant. Although there are important differences among the countries in Eastern Europe that shape social movements, some parts of the movements’ histories and characteristics are common. These differences and commonalities, crucial for the composition of the movements and their repertoires of action, are a result of the movements’ histories, legal systems, and political situations.

  • 7.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Green Activism in Post-Socialist Europe and the former Soviet Union2016In: Social Movement Studies, ISSN 1474-2837, E-ISSN 1474-2829, Vol. 15, no 2, p. 242-244Article, book review (Other academic)
  • 8.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Od post-anarchizmu do pop-anarchizmu2016In: Studia z dziejów anarchizmu (2): w dwusetlecie urodzin Michaiła Bakunina / [ed] Radosława Skryckiego, Szczecin: Wydawnictwo Naukowe Uniwersytetu Szczecińskiego , 2016Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 9.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Punk Against Communism: Revolting in 1980s Poland2016In: A European Youth Revolt?: European Perspectives on Youth Protest and Social Movements in the 1980s / [ed] Andresen, Knud and Bart van der Steen, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016, p. 203-216Chapter in book (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The 1989 pro-democratic transition in Poland was partly influenced by the rapidly growing youth subcultures. Punk rock was one of the most visible of them, providing numerous young people with networking possibilities, fresh ideas and different (than of the dissidents) understanding of freedom. Punk was not only challenging aesthetically, but also contested communist authorities from a different perspective, looking into environmental protection or turning against compulsory military service. The punk ‘no future’ slogan was also very appealing for young people in crisis-driven Poland of 1980s and the flagship punk event in Poland – the Jarocin music festival – became a safe place for many young people. The aim of this chapter is to show how punk rock helped to overthrow communism in Poland through these processes.

  • 10.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Social movement or subculture?: Alterglobalists in Central and Eastern Europe2013In: Interface: a journal for and about social movements, ISSN 2009-2431, Vol. 5, no 2, p. 399-421Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Most of the research on the alterglobalist, also known as the global justice, movement has focused on Western Europe and North America, with occasional research on other parts of the world. There has been little research done on this movement in the postsocialist countries of Central and Eastern Europe. This paper attempts to fill this gap by exploring the key events of the movement as well as the genealogy of grassroots social activism in the region. It offers insight into a movement that developed in a region that, due to its history, has been rather hostile to leftist ideologies and groups. This paper examines the development of the alterglobalist movement in the region and traces its inspirations and path dependencies. It also poses questions about the nature of the movement and ways to analyse it – whether as a politicized social movement or a subculture and lifestyle choice. The close connections of Central and Eastern European grassroots social movements to subcultures and counterculture might suggest a new and fresh perspective for studying social movements.

  • 11.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Solidarity (Poland)2013In: The Wiley-Blackwell encyclopedia of social and political movements / [ed] David A. Snow, Donatella della Porta, Bert Klandermans & Doug McAdam, Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013Chapter in book (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Solidarity (Solidarność in Polish) is a social movement, based on a trade union, that emerged in Poland in 1980. It was not only the biggest social mobilization in history (it is estimated that approximately 9–10 million people became members of Solidarity in a country of 38 million), but many commentators stress its leading role in overthrowing the communist regime in Poland and also in the rest of Eastern Europe.

  • 12.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Squatting in the East – Rozbrat in Poland2014In: The City Is Ours: Squatting and Autonomous Movements in Europe from the 1970s to the Present / [ed] van Hoogenhuijze, Leendert and Van Der Steen, Bart, Oakland CA: PM Press , 2014, p. 233-253Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Squatters and autonomous movements have been in the forefront of radical politics in Europe for nearly a half-century—from struggles against urban renewal and gentrification, to large-scale peace and environmental campaigns, to spearheading the antiausterity protests sweeping the continent. Through the compilation of the local movement histories of eight different cities—including Amsterdam, Berlin, and other famous centers of autonomous insurgence along with underdocumented cities such as Poznan and Athens—The City Is Ours paints a broad and complex picture of Europe’s squatting and autonomous movements. Each chapter focuses on one city and provides a clear chronological narrative and analysis accompanied by photographs and illustrations. The chapters focus on the most important events and developments in the history of these movements. Furthermore, they identify the specificities of the local movements and deal with issues such as the relation between politics and subculture, generational shifts, the role of confrontation and violence, and changes in political tactics. 

  • 13.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    The ‘Other’ Democratization in Poland: The Case of Environmental Protection Movement2015In: Democratization through Social Activism: Gender and Environmental Issues in Post-Communist Societies / [ed] Vlad, Ioana ; Fabian, Katalin, Bucharest: Tritonic , 2015, p. 235-264Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper I show the development of the environmental protection movement in Poland and its influence on the process of democratization that occurred in the 1980s. I present the social and political landscape of Poland of the 1980s, focusing on the dynamics within the dissident sector. I shall later describe briefly the few most important campaigns of those times and present the actors that took part in them. In the second part of the paper I will analyze the input of the environmental movement for the democratization process of Poland and on the development of the NGO sector and grassroots social activism. The environmental movement in Poland managed to mobilize different cohorts of the society compared to the mainstream opposition, introduced novel repertoire of contention and brought issues that were not within the mainstream public discourse. In the last part of the paper I argue that the continuity of the environmental movement in Poland and its influence on the democratic consolidation after 1989. In the paper I focus mostly on the radical strain of the environmental movement in Poland that is under-researched within the transitional and social movement literature and that seemed to set the tone for the whole sector in terms of agenda and repertoires of action.

  • 14.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    What are Eastern European Social Movements and How to Study Them?2015In: Intersections. East European Journal of Society and Politics, ISSN 2416-089X, Vol. 1, no 3, p. 4-15Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The idea for this issue emerged in Budapest during a two-day workshop on social movements in Central and Eastern Europe. The ideas behind this workshop (and thus this issue) was to discuss the specificity of civil mobilizations in the region and to contribute to academic debates ongoing since the transformation of 1989. Is there a regional specificity of social activism? Is, and if yes, how social activism is different from other parts of the world? Does this imply different theoretical and analytical approach? Other questions, closely linked to these are, how Eastern Europe is defined, characterized and constructed? How the eastern European context and environment affect social movements and mobilizations in the region? The main goal of this article is to present the main discussions among social movement academics and practitioners in the region and to deconstruct some of the clichés about grassroots activism in Eastern Europe that arose over the years.

  • 15.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    et al.
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Mikecs, Daniel
    Intersections. East European Journal of Society and Politics: Social movements and contentious politics in Central and Eastern Europe2015Collection (editor) (Refereed)
  • 16.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    et al.
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Polanska, Dominika V.
    Uppsala University.
    Radical Urban Movements in Poland: the case of squatting2016In: Miscellanea Anthropologica et Sociologica, ISSN 2084-2937, E-ISSN 2354-0389, Vol. 17, no 1, p. 53-69Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Radical social movements are more and more often the subject of academic inquiry, where their agenda, identity-building processes and repertoires of action are examined vis a vis the dominant discursive opportunity structures. The case study presented in this articleis the squatting movement in Poland. We interpret this movement, its actions and in particular alliance-building strategies, through the perspective of radical flanks of broader urban social movements environment.

  • 17.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    et al.
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Wennerhag, Magnus
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Always against the state?: An analysis of Polish and Swedish radical left-libertarian activists’ interaction with institutionalized politics2015In: PArticipation and COnflict, ISSN 1972-7623, E-ISSN 2035-6609, Vol. 8, no 3, p. 845-875Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Radical left-libertarian movements are often regarded as primarily seeking ways to accom-plish social and political change outside the framework of institutionalized politics. Previous research, however, has paid little or no attention to the question of these activists’ actual interactions with institu-tionalized politics, nor has it addressed the ways these interactions could be understood in relation to their overall strategies and ideology. This article therefore explores whether, and to what extent, such interaction actually occurs and analyzes the meanings and motives radical left-libertarian activists – from anarchist, autonomist, and anarcho-syndicalist groups – attribute to various types of political actions, ranging from voting and lobbying to protests and direct action. We furthermore compare activists in Po-land and Sweden, in order to scrutinize whether cross-country differences in “political opportunities” affects the activists’ political strategies and ideas about how social and political change can best be ac-complished. Contrary to popular beliefs and many activists’ own self-declarations, our analysis shows that radical left-libertarian groups do in fact try to achieve political change by interacting with institution-alized politics. While radical left-libertarian activists do in most cases prefer “direct action”, this article explores how a more complex relationship to institutionalized politics allows them to accomplish real and immediate changes at the grassroots level.

  • 18.
    Polanska, Dominika V.
    et al.
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology. Uppsala universitet.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, Centre for Baltic and East European Studies (CBEES).
    Poland: Local differences and the importence of cohesion2016In: Baltic Worlds, ISSN 2000-2955, E-ISSN 2001-7308, Vol. IX, no 1-2, p. 46-56Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Two Polish cities, Warsaw and Poznań, are studied in the article to examine how external structures are handled and used by squatters in these two settings. The aim is to analyze opportunity structures that condition the emergence and development of squatting and how squatters respond to and utilize these opportunities. Our ambition is to understand why squatting has developed differently in the two cities by emphasizing the duration and cohesion of the squatting scene as pivotal for the different trajectories of squatting. It is argued in the article that the durability of the squatting environment abates tendencies to open the squatting scene to external coalitions and establish more institutionalized forms of political struggle.

  • 19.
    Polanska Vergara, Dominika
    et al.
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology. Södertörn University, Centre for Baltic and East European Studies (CBEES).
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    The transformative power of cooperation between social movements: squatting and tenants’ movements in Poland2015In: City, ISSN 1360-4813, E-ISSN 1470-3629, Vol. 19, no 2-3, p. 274-296Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Squatting, or the use of property without the legal permission, and tenants’ activism are under-researched areas, in particular in the post-socialist context. Poland has been pointed out as extraordinary on the map of squatting in post-socialist Europe and a considerable number of tenants’ organizations are active in the country. What is most interesting is that squatters’ and tenants’ activists are forming alliances, despite their obvious differences in their organizational models, social composition, along with the specific motives and goals of their activism. The objective of this article is to examine the relations between the tenants’ and squatting movements in Poland by studying two cities where both movements are established and closely cooperating. In particular we are interested in the transformative power of such cooperation and we assume that cooperation between social movements results in negotiations and transformations of the social movement actors involved. The empirical foundations for this article are 50 interviews, whereof 30 interviews conducted in Warsaw with squatters and tenants’ movement activists and 20 interviews conducted with activists in Poznań. Warsaw and Poznań are, moreover, two Polish cities where the squatting movement is most vibrant and where squatters and tenants have achieved some considerable successes in their activities. The article argues against previous studies emphasizing access to abundant resources and identity alignment as crucial for the mobilization of collective and collaborative action. Instead, it argues that the lack of resources might also be driving social movements towards cooperation, as a kind of compensation. Moreover, our cases demonstrate that ideology and identity alignment in social movements create stagnation with regard to openness towards new allies. We therefore argue that a high degree of identity alignment and ideological consistency might discourage the formation of new alliances.

  • 20.
    Wennerhag, Magnus
    et al.
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Fröhlich, ChristianHigher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia.Piotrowski, GrzegorzSödertörn University, Centre for Baltic and East European Studies (CBEES). European Solidarity Centre, Gdansk, Poland.
    Radical left movements in Europe2017Collection (editor) (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    When the Iron Curtain lifted in 1989, it was seen by some as proof of the final demise of the ideas and aspirations of the radical left. Not many years passed, however, before the critique of capitalism and social inequalities were once again the main protest themes of social movements. This book provides an account of radical left movements in today’s Europe and how they are trying to accomplish social and political change.

    The book’s international group of leading experts provide detailed analysis on social movement organizations, activist groups, and networks that are rooted in the left-wing ideologies of anarchism, Marxism, socialism, and communism in both newly democratized post-communist and longstanding liberal-democratic polities. Through a range of case studies, the authors explore how radical left movements are influenced by their situated political and social contexts, and how contemporary radical left activism differs from both new and old social movements on one hand, and the activities of radical left parliamentary parties on the other. Ultimately, this volume investigates what it means to be ‘radical left’ in current day liberal-democratic and capi- talist societies after the fall of European state socialism.

    This is valuable reading for students and researchers interested in European politics, contemporary social movements and political sociology.

  • 21.
    Wennerhag, Magnus
    et al.
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Piotrowski, Grzegorz
    Södertörn University, School of Social Sciences, Sociology.
    Challenging Consensus in Civil Society: Anarchist activists in Poland and in Sweden2013Conference paper (Other academic)
1 - 21 of 21
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