William F. Podlich Distinguished Fellows

Academic Year 2004-2005

Spring 2005

Joanna Zach-Ronda is a professor at the Jagellonian University in Cracow and at the Institute for Polish Literary Studies. She has also been a research fellow at Oxford (1989) and Harvard University (1993). She is the author of two books and numerous articles. Her first book is a study of the drama of Poland’s great 19th century author, Cyprian Norwid. Her ongoing project is “Mind in Captivity and Exile: Czeslaw Milosz and European Modernity” and follows her first book on Milosz's Search for Self (2002). Her articles have focused on the theme of exile and the role of former exiles in the New Europe. Since 2000 Professor Zach has been a member of the Helsinki Forum, an independent cultural project to foster Pan-European critical debate that brings together writers, philosophers, historians, and social scientists from all parts of Europe. She spoke at the Athenaeum on the topic of “The Mind in Captivity: Czeslaw Milosz and Modernity.”

Adam Michnik is the founder and editor-in-chief of Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland's highest-circulating daily newspaper. He was also co-founder of KOR (Committee for the Defense of Workers) in 1976. Michnik was detained many times during 1965-1980. A prominent “Solidarity” activist during the ’80s, he spent a total of six years in Polish prisons for activities opposing the communist regime. Michnik participated in the Round Table Talks in 1989, was a member of the first non-communist parliament from 1989 until 1991, at which point he created the first independent Polish newspaper, Gazeta Wyborcza. He has been awarded many prizes and titles: the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award, the Erasmus Prize, the Francisco Cerecedo Journalist Prize (the first non-Spanish author to do so), Grand Prince Giedymin Order; Chevalier de la Legion d'Honneur. His two Athenaeum talks were on “The Legacy of Czeslaw Milosz” and “Poland’s Integration into Europe.”