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Polish Book Club Promotes Reading
And Discussion of Great Literature

Polish Museum of America Library and The Polish American Librarians Association invites you to Third Tuesday Polish Book Club

ILLINOIS – In partnership with The Polish Museum of America Library (PMAL), the Polish American Librarians Association (PALA) invites you to join its Third Tuesday Polish Book Club. The book club meets monthly through February 2015 on the third Tuesday of the month at 6 p.m., with discussion groups at five Chicagoland libraries: Prospect Heights Public Library, Wood Dale Public Library, Indian Trails Library District in Wheeling, Eisenhower Public Library in Harwood Heights, and the PMAL in Chicago. Discussions will be in Polish or English; please refer to the current schedule below.

On April 15th, the PMAL will host the book club discussion on The Grasinski Girls by Mary Erdmans, an American sociologist of Polish American background. Her book is based on interviews with her mother and aunts representing the working class American women of Polish descent, born in the 1920s and 1930s. They constituted the silent majority of the old Polonia, the one we know little about except that it existed. These people were not particularly involved in Polish American organizations or in activities aimed at helping the Poles or other Polish Americans. They did not participate in Polish American observances or holidays. Their Polish roots were visible, however, in their otherwise Americanized everyday life.

Joanna Wojdon, a Polish historian from the University of Wroclaw and 2014 Fulbright scholar at Loyola University Chicago, will lead the discussion. Her research interests include the history of Polish Americans after WWII. She has authored two books in Polish on the history of the Polish American Congress in 1944-1988 and a number of articles, both in Polish and in English, on the image of Polonia in the Polish press as well as on other Polish American issues.

Wojdon’s discussion will focus on questions about the Polish American and more general ethnic identity in the U.S. What does it mean to be a Polish American? What role does an ethnic background play in the lives of the Americans? How can we reach that silent majority of Polish ethnics? To what extent are the Grasinski girls typical for that group?

The April 15th discussion will be held at 6:00 p.m. at The Polish Museum of America, Sabina P. Logisz Great Hall (984 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL 60642-4101). Registration is required on the PALA website.

 

Third Tuesday Polish Book Club full schedule:

April 15: Polish Museum of America, Chicago. The Grasinski Girls by Mary Erdmans. Discussion Leader: Joanna Wojdon, historian from University of Wrocław, Poland and Fulbright Scholar at Loyola, 312-626-5784, joanna.wojdon@uni.wroc.pl. English.

May 20:  Indian Trails Public Library, Wheeling. Traktat o łuskaniu fasoli by Wiesław Myśliwski. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Elizabeth Marszalik, 847-279-2211, emarszalik@indiantrailslibrary.org. Polish.

June 17: Polish Museum of America Library, Chicago. Prawiek i inne czasy by Olga Tokarczuk. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Małgorzata Kot, 773-384-3352 ext. 2111, malgorzata-kot@polishmuseumofamerica.org. Polish.

July 15: Indian Trails Public Library, Wheeling.  Jadąc do Babadag by Andrzej Stasiuk. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Elizabeth Marszalik, 847-279-2211, emarszalik@indiantrailslibrary.org. Polish.

August 19: Eisenhower Public Library, Harwood Heights. House of Day, House of Night by Olga Tokarczuk. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Kathleen Weiss, 708-867-7828, www.eisenhowerlibrary.org. English

September 16: Indian Trails Public Library, Wheeling. Ciemno prawie noc by Joanna Bator. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Elizabeth Marszalik, 847-279-2211, emarszalik@indiantrailslibrary.org. Polish.

October 21: Prospect Heights Public Library. Spuścizna by Isaac Bashevis Singer. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Aldona Salska, 847- 259-3500, asalska@phpl.info. Polish.

November 18: Prospect Heights Public Library. Mini-wykłady o maxi-sprawach by Leszek Kołakowski. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Aldona Salska, 847- 259-3500, asalska@phpl.info. Polish.

December 16: Prospect Heights Public Library. Ferdydurke by Witold Gombrowicz. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Aldona Salska, 847- 259-3500, asalska@phpl.info. Polish.

January 20, 2015: Polish Museum of America Library, Chicago. Listy na papierze wyczerpanym by Agnieszka Osiecka and Jeremi Przybora. Discussion Leader and Librarian Contact: Małgorzata Kot, 773-384-3352 ext. 2111, malgorzata-kot@polishmuseumofamerica.org. Polish.

Books are available to eligible borrowers at the respective libraries.

PALA encourages libraries across the country to sponsor book discussion groups. For more information about how to form a Third Tuesday Polish Book Club or bring discussion leaders to your library, contact PALA series coordinator Leonard Kniffel at lkniffel@sbcglobal.net.