TRANSFORMATIONS OF MANNERS AND MORALS IN POLAND DURING THE FIRST DECADES OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY (A SURVEY OF RESEARCH PROBLEMS)
Apparently, at the beginning of the twentieth century norms and models of behaviour shaped during the previous century were universally respected in Poland. Apart from the western territories, the majority of the population - the inhabitants of villages and small towns, continued to live according to the rhythm of a traditional, agrarian society, marked by the seasons and religious rituals. and the retention of traditional manners and morals was favoured also by the low level of literacy and the narrow social range of modernisation. More frequent symptoms of conduct clearly distant from the one accepted at the time by the majority of the participants of public life, were encountered almost exclusively in large towns. Nonetheless, even here they took place on a macro–social scale only in the Kingdom of Poland. The experiences which the Poles won during the WW I, daily encounters with violence in the course of the wartime years contributed to disseminating the conviction about its natural nature, and the acceptance of the physical elimination of political opponents regarded as fatal enemies more frequently than it was customary in the past. True, the behaviour of an overwhelming majority of the participants of public life did not differ from that dominating prior to the WW I, but the 1930s witnessed a distinct growth in the number of those who supported the application of physical force in the struggle against their opponents, especially amongst the younger generations.
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