Against the abolition of anthropology in Poland

At Allegra Lab, we have recently published a collective letter, addressed to the Polish Minister of Science and Higher Education, Dr. Jarosław Gowin. In the letter, our collaboration has made clear that the abolition of anthropology as an independent and renowned discipline will have negative consequences for our colleagues in Poland and for anthropology in Europe in general.

Among our reasons why we object this decree, which entered into force on October 1, 2018 are the following ones:

  1. merging ‘anthropology’ with a conglomerate discipline called “Cultural and Religious Studies” will mean that the unique knowledge, the distinctive insights gained by the ethnographic approach, and the respective regional expertise of our colleagues in Poland will de facto become invisible.
  2. the change will impede international academic collaboration, making it more difficult for anthropologists in other countries to identify their Polish counterparts
  3. Funding institutions might impose restrictions on collaborating with experts outside of the internationally recognizable field of anthropology.
  4. Anthropology PhD students in Poland might have problems locating external supervisors, let alone secure funding possibilities.
  5. ERASMUS cooperation might be more difficult to realise as it is not clear what role anthropology and ethnology are going to play within the new “Cultural and Religious Studies”.

At Allegra Lab, we are currently collecting signatures to our letter. Please consider signing the letter by adding your name to the comment function below the post which you can read here.

Also, please read Mateusz Laszczkowski’s opinion piece on the situation in Poland.