SCIENCE AND EDUCATION IN POLISH-FRENCH RELATIONS IN THE YEARS 1971-1980
The aim of the paper is to analyse the key issues in Polish-French relations in the field of science and education in the 1970s. The paper is based on an analysis of archival materials gathered as a result of a search in French and Polish archives. The analysis has shown that the political transformations in the 1970s (due to detente in international relations) resulted in an ongoing process of extending contacts between institutions and individuals engaged in scientific and scholarly activity in the two countries. As for education, a constant problem related to the question of teaching Polish in France. The analysis also points to the main problems relating to the functioning of the Centre de Civilisation Française at the University of Warsaw, of the French Reading Rooms in Warsaw and Cracow, as well as the that of the Scientific Center of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Paris. The overall conclusion of the paper is that in the period in question a lot of progress was made in the field of Polish-French scientific and educational ties compared to the previous decades. A limited opening towards the West, one of the keystone elements of Edward Gierek's foreign policy, bore fruit in much wider opportunities for exchanges of scientists and students, as well as of secondary school pupils. Impediments to the development of such contacts came mainly from the decreasing financial possibilities of the departments and institutions involved. It also seems that Poland was not regarded in France as a very attractive partner in scientific and scholarly exchange. This, however, does not mean that there were no areas in scientific and scholarly contacts in which collaboration proceeded very fruitfully. Nonetheless, the precise determination of the scale of such collaboration will require further, more specialized research.
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