1.02.2021 Events, Literature

Encounters with Polish Literature

Project originated in 2021.

Monthly premieres and video recordings are available at:
Polish Cultural Institute New York YouTube

Encounters with Polish Literature is a video series in English for anyone interested in literature and the culture of books and reading. There are more points of contact between Polish writers and North American culture than many readers realize. Consider the long career of Czesław Miłosz at UC Berkeley and on the Bay Area poetry scene, the popularity of Wisława Szymborska in English translation, or the way that New Yorkers found comfort in Adam Zagajewski’s “Try to Praise the Mutilated World” after 9/11. Each month, host David A. Goldfarb presents a new topic in conversation with an expert on that author or book or movement in Polish literature. Translators will bring us into the delicate process of taking what may be a very personal and individual artistic expression in Polish and rendering it in a way that makes us feel as readers in English that we’ve made a human connection with the author. When possible, the show will bring in living authors to discuss their own work. Students thinking of taking a course in Polish literature or perhaps pursuing an advanced degree in the field, can meet leading scholars in Polish Studies at universities in North America and all around the world. If you are interested in writers like Miłosz, Szymborska, and Zagajewski, as well as prose writers, essayists, novelists, journalists, and more, then Encounters with Polish Literature can be your window into their world and their context.

Bartek Remisko, Executive Producer
David A. Goldfarb, Producer and Host
Natalia Iyudin, Producer

Season 1

S1E1: Being Poland
Premiere: February 1, 2021
Introduction with Tamara Trojanowska (University of Toronto), Joanna Niżyńska (Indiana University), and Przemysław Czapliński (Adam Mickiewicz University), editors of Being Poland: A New History of Polish Literature and Culture since 1918 (University of Toronto Press, 2018).

S1E2: Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz “Witkacy”
Premiere: March 1, 2021
Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz (“Witkacy”) with Benjamin Paloff (University of Michigan)

S1E3: Witold Gombrowicz
Premiere: April 1, 2021
Witold Gombrowicz with Bożena Shallcross (University of Chicago)

S1E4: Adam Zagajewski
Premiere: April 28, 2021
Adam Zagajewski with Clare Cavanagh (Northwestern University)

S1E5: Bruno Schulz
Premiere: June 1, 2021
Bruno Schulz with Karen Underhill (University of Illinois—Chicago)

S1E6: Tadeusz Różewicz
Premiere: July 1, 2021
Tadeusz Różewicz with Joanna Trzeciak (Kent State University)

S1E7: Zofia Nałkowska
Premiere: August 1, 2021
Zofia Nałkowska with Ursula Phillips (translator)

S1E8: Stanisław Lem
Premiere: September 13, 2021
Stanisław Lem with Bożena Shallcross (University of Chicago)

S1E9: Marek Hłasko
Premiere: October 1, 2021
Marek Hłasko with George Gasyna (University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign)

S1E10: Reportage I: Kapuściński, Szejnert, Grzebałkowska
Premiere: November 1, 2021
Polish School of Reportage: A Brief Overview with Beth Holmgren (Duke University)

S1E11: Olga Tokarczuk
Premiere: December 1, 2021
Olga Tokarczuk with Antonia Lloyd-Jones and Jennifer Croft (translators)

Season 2

S2E1: Reportage II: Filip Springer and Katarzyna Boni 
Premiere: January 3, 2022
Contemporary Reportage with Beth Holmgren (Duke University)

S2E2: Wisława Szymborska
Premiere: February 1, 2022
Wisława Szymborska with Clare Cavanagh (Northwestern University)

S2E3: Adam Mickiewicz
Premiere: March 1, 2022
Adam Mickiewicz with Roman Koropeckyj (UCLA)

S2E4: Yuri Andrukhovych
Premiere: April 1, 2022
Yuri Andrukhovych with Vitaly Chernetsky (University of Kansas)

S2E5: Żanna Słoniowska
Premiere: May 2, 2022
Żanna Słoniowska, author of The House with the Stained Glass Window

S2E6: Joseph Conrad
Premiere:  June 1, 2022 
Joseph Conrad with George Gasyna (University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign)

S2E7: Miron Białoszewski
Premiere: July 1, 2022
Miron Białoszewski with Joanna Niżyńska (Indiana University)

S2E8: Serhiy Zhadan
Premiere: August 1, 2022
Serhiy Zhadan with translators John Hennessy (U. Mass, Amherst) and Ostap Kin (Archivist, Zimmerli Art Museum, Rutgers U.)

S2E9: Aleksander Wat
Premiere:  September 1, 2022 
Aleksander Wat with Michał Paweł Markowski (University of Illinois—Chicago) 

S2E10: Czesław Miłosz
Premiere: October 1, 2022
Czesław Miłosz with Irena Grudzińska (Polish Academy of Sciences) 

S2E11: Narcyza Żmichowska
Premiere: November 1, 2022
Narcyza Żmichowska with Ursula Phillips (Translator) 

S2E12: Taras Shevchenko
Premiere: December 1, 2022
Taras Shevchenko with George Grabowicz (Harvard University)

Season 3

S3E1: Tadeusz Dołęga-Mostowicz
Premiere: January 1, 2023
Tadeusz Dołęga-Mostowicz with Megan Thomas (translator) and Ewa Małachowska-Pasek (University of Michigan)

S3E2: Andrzej Sapkowski 
Premiere: February 1, 2023
Andrzej Sapkowski with David French (translator)

S3E3: Leopold Tyrmand
Premiere: March 1, 2023
Leopold Tyrmand with Benjamin Paloff (University of Michigan)

S3E4: Nowa Fala
Premiere: April 11, 2023
Nowa Fala and underground poets of the Solidarity era with Katarzyna Zechenter (UCL, School of Slavonic and East European Studies)

S3E5: Debora Vogel
Premiere: May 2, 2023
Debora Vogel with Anastasiya Lyubas (translator and scholar) and Karolina Szymaniak (University of Wrocław)

S3E6: Henryk Sienkiewicz
Premiere: June 1, 2023
Henryk Sienkiewicz with Stanley Bill (Cambridge University)

S3E7: Dorota Masłowska
Premiere: July 1, 2023
Dorota Masłowska with Benjamin Paloff (University of Michigan)

S3E8: Władysław Reymont
Premiere: August 1, 2023
Władysław Reymont with Anna Zaranko (translator)

S3E9: Zuzanna Ginczanka
Premiere: September 12, 2023
Zuzanna Ginczanka with Anna Muller, Mira Rosenthal, and Joanna Trzeciak Huss

S3E10: Wiesław Myśliwski
Premiere: October 1, 2023
Wiesław Myśliwski with Bill Johnston (translator)

S3E11: Reportage III: Patrycja Dołowy and Mikołaj Grynberg
Premiere: November 1, 2023
Reportage III: Patrycja Dołowy and Mikołaj Grynberg with Sean Bye (translator)

S3E12: Oksana Zabuzhko
Premiere: December 1, 2023
Oksana Zabuzhko with Halyna Hryn (Editor, Harvard Ukrainian Studies, Harvard University)

About the Host

David A. Goldfarb is an independent scholar of Polish literature and literary theory, a literary translator from Polish to English, and a liaison for Polish authors to US publishers. In 2018 he translated feature articles and interviews from Wysokie Obcasy—the weekly women’s supplement to Poland’s main independent daily paper Gazeta Wyborcza—for the former Newsmavens.com, a pan-European women’s news portal. From mid-2010 to the end of 2013, he was Curator of Literature and Humanities Programming at the Polish Cultural Institute New York, a diplomatic mission of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland. Prior to that he served as Assistant Professor of Slavic Literatures and Comparative Literature at Barnard College, Columbia University.

He holds a doctorate in Comparative Literature from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York as well as an M.A. in Slavic Languages and Literatures from the University of Toronto, and a B.A. in Philosophy from Cornell University and Deep Springs College. He has published articles on Bruno Schulz, Zbigniew Herbert, Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz, Mikhail Lermontov, and East European cinema in such journals as East European Politics and Societies, Indiana Slavic Studies, Philosophy and Literature, Prooftexts, The Polish Review, Slavic and East European Performance, and Jewish Quarterly, and he has published book chapters on Jozef Wittlin, Witold Gombrowicz, and Nikolai Gogol and Giuseppe Arcimboldo. He has written the introduction and notes for Tolstoy’s “The Death of Ivan Ilych” and Other Stories and Turgenev’s Fathers and Sons for the Barnes and Noble Classics series, and for the Penguin Classics edition of the The Street of Crocodiles and Other Stories by Bruno Schulz.

This project is part of  21-anniversary celebration of Polish Cultural Institute New York.

Partners of the project:

Scheduled Events >Literature