Agnieszka Graff - "Claiming the Shipyard, the Cowboy Hat and the Anchor for Women: Polish Feminism’s Dialogue & Struggle with National Symbolism"  Add To Calendar

  • Date(s): Monday, 4/8 4:00 PM to Monday, 4/8 6:00 PM
  • Campus Address: Institute for the Humanities (Stevenson Hall Basement)


Claiming the Shipyard, the Cowboy Hat and the Anchor for Women: Polish Feminism’s Dialogue & Struggle with National Symbolism

Agnieszka Graff
University of Warsaw

Polish nationalism is strongly gendered – a fact that has profound and much debated consequences for women and for feminist activism in Poland. This lecture examines the mechanisms of exclusion, looking at three specific instances of symbolic contestation and appropriation unfolding over time since the 90s. Does the Black Protests’ massive recycling of national symbolism constitute resistance to or capitulation to the present wave of ethno-nationalism? More broadly: how can justice movements reclaim the language and emotions of “the people” in an age of illiberal populism? 

Agnieszka Graff is an associate professor at the American Studies Center, University of Warsaw, where she teaches US culture, literature and film, African American studies and gender studies. She has authored several books of feminist essays including: Świat bez kobiet (World without Women, 2001), Rykoszetem (Stray Bullets – Gender, Sexuality and Nation, 2008) and Matka feministka (Mother and Feminist, 2014). Her articles on gender and nationalism have appeared in Public Culture, Feminist Studies and Signs. She is the co-editor of an up-coming theme issue of Signs, “Gender and the Rise of the Global Right”. Her ongoing research project is on connections between the anti-gender mobilization and right-wing populism.

Part of the Poland Now Roundtable Series 2019

GRAFF Poster 2019