The Exile Mission: The Polish Political Diaspora and Polish Americans, 1939-1956

The Exile Mission: The Polish Political Diaspora and Polish Americans, 1939-1956

by Anna D. Jaroszynska-Kirchmann

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At midcentury, two distinct Polish immigrant groups—those Polish Americans who were descendants of economic immigrants from the turn of the twentieth century and the Polish political refugees who chose exile after World War II and the communist takeover in Poland—faced an uneasy challenge to reconcile their concepts of responsibility toward the homeland.

The new arrivals did not consider themselves simply as immigrants, but rather as members of the special category of political refugees. They defined their identity within the framework of the exile mission, an unwritten set of beliefs, goals, and responsibilities, placing patriotic work for Poland at the center of Polish immigrant duties.

In The Exile Mission, an intriguing look at the interplay between the established Polish community and the refugee community, Anna Jaroszynska–Kirchmann presents a tale of Polish Americans and Polish refugees who, like postwar Polish exile communities all over the world, worked out their own ways to implement the mission's main goals. Between the outbreak of World War II and 1956, as Professor Jaroszynska–Kirchmann demonstrates, the exile mission in its most intense form remained at the core of relationships between these two groups.

The Exile Mission is a compelling analysis of the vigorous debate about ethnic identity and immigrant responsibility toward the homeland. It is the first full–length examination of the construction and impact of the exile mission on the interactions between political refugees and established ethnic communities.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780821441855
Publisher: Ohio University Press
Publication date: 08/15/2009
Series: Polish and Polish American Studies
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 368
File size: 8 MB

About the Author

An associate professor of history at Eastern Connecticut State University, Anna D. Jaroszynska-Kirchmann is the author of a number of articles on the history of the postwar Polish political diaspora, two of which received the Polish American Historical Association's Swastek Award in 2002 and 2003. The Exile Mission manuscript won the Kulczycki prize.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents List of Illustrations 000 List of Tables 000 Series Editor's Preface 000 Preface and Acknowledgments 000 List of Abbreviations 000 Guide to Pronunciation 000 Introduction 1 1. "Smoke over America, blood over Europe": World War II and the Polish Diaspora 000 2. "All I have left is my free song": The Polish Community in the Displaced Persons Camps 000 3. "Live a happy and peaceful life here": The Resettlement of Polish Displaced Persons in the United States 000 4. "So they are among brethren": Conflict in the Community 000 5. "Ambassadors of our cause": Turning Points 000 Epilogue 000 Notes 000 Bibliography 000 Index 000

Library of Congress Subject Headings for this publication: Polish Americans History 20th century, Polish Americans Cultural assimilation, World War, 1939-1945 Refugees, Refugees Poland History 20th century

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