BETWEEN EAST AND WEST: Writings from Kultura by Robert--Ed. Kostrzewa

BETWEEN EAST AND WEST: Writings from Kultura

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Here, editor Kostrzewa (born in Warsaw, now living in N.Y.C.) has collected articles that have appeared in the distinguished Polish emigr‚ journal Kultura, published out of Paris. Kultura's golden age, during the Fifties and Sixties--when it printed all of Gombrowicz's Diary, and Milosz's startling essays, and the analyses of Leszek Kolakowski, and much Russian samizdat writing--has not been included here (there have been earlier anthologies in English). This is more recent Kultura material, with a maturity and confidence to it that, though it may display less brilliance, also evinces more balance and breadth. The high point, not surprisingly, is an essay by Czelaw Milosz on ""Dostoevsky and Western Intellectuals"" that is as seminal as any Dostoevsky text (in fact Milosz begins it by admitting: ""Probably, after all, I will not write a book on Dostoevsky, but there is no reason why I shouldn't tell what that book would be about""). ""The Crushing of Solidarity,"" by Raynard Kuklinski, a behind-the-scenes scenario by an ex-government official, is of documentary importance; and there are especially significant essays that deal with Polish Catholic-myth and Polish anti-Semitism. Not classic material, then, but Kultura's force as disseminator of opposition and now self-criticism appears undiminished.

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1989
Publisher: Hill and Wang/Farrar, Straus & Giroux