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The Limits and Merits of Internationalism. Experts, the State and the International Community in Poland in the First Half of the Twentieth Century

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  • Katrin Steffen
  • Martin Kohlrausch

Abstract

Employing the example of two Polish technical experts - the metallurgist Jan Czochralski and the architect-urbanist Szymon Syrkus, who both reached the peak of their careers in the Interwar period, the article sketches a particular space of expertise in the newly developing states of Central Europe after 1918 and in Poland in particular. For experts like Czochralski and Syrkus a new and pronounced state activity helped to bring about a space of opportunities but was also a source of severe restrictions and demands for loyalty. With the Second World War and then with the establishment of a socialist regime this space vanished and a particular kind of experts, relying heavily on the transnational structures still being in place in central Eastern Europe before the war almost ceased to exist.

Suggested Citation

  • Katrin Steffen & Martin Kohlrausch, 2009. "The Limits and Merits of Internationalism. Experts, the State and the International Community in Poland in the First Half of the Twentieth Century," EUI-RSCAS Working Papers 41, European University Institute (EUI), Robert Schuman Centre of Advanced Studies (RSCAS).
  • Handle: RePEc:erp:euirsc:p0220
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    Keywords

    internationalism; knowledge;

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