The main aim of the Tygodnik Powszechny Foundation is to deepen and promote a democratic model for society rooted in the broad tradition of Catholic thought. Among the many tasks of the Foundation is custody of the Jerzy Turowicz archive and managing the legacy of the heritage and traditions of the Tygodnik Powszechny. It's bylaws includes a number of additional tasks, such as furthering freedom of speech and a free and independent mass media, promoting reading and education, the extension and promotion of Polish culture and scholaship in Europe and the world; the documenting and archiving of Catholic social, cultural and academic life; supporting the development of Christian culture and teaching, as well as organizing and promoting educational and artistic activities.
The foundation was established on June 14, 2002 with the main goal in mind to collect the shares and become the owner of the Tygodnik Powszechny Ltd., and to get involved in financing the publishing and editorial aspects of the weekly "Tygodnik Powszechny". Since June 2007 the second partner and co-owner of the Tygodnik Powszechny Ltd. is ITI Impressario Holding - part of the biggest private media holding in Poland.
"Tygodnik Powszechny", was established in 1945 under the light-handed protection of the Catholic Church as a weekly social and cultural journal of the Polish intelligentsia reflecting all religious, philosophical and political views, edited by Jerzy Turowicz until his death in 1999. During the era of the Polish People’s Republic, "Tygodnik Powszechny" was a bastion of opposition to the forces of totalitarianism and censorship. Among the authors writing for "Tygodnik Powszechny" there were: Karol Wojtyła - the pope John Paul II, Nobel Prize winners (including Czesław Miłosz and Wisława Szymborska), worldwide famous writers and scholars and many other eminent persons.
Since 1989 a group of editors and journalists of "Tygodnik Powszechny" get deeply involved in the political changes in Poland and Eastern Europe. Fr. Józef Tischner – priest and philospher was a spiritual leader of the Solidarity movement since it's very beginnig. Tadeusz Mazowiecki, became a First Prime Minister, Krzysztof Kozłowski served some years as a Minister of Interior Affairs, and – last but not a least –Władysław Bartoszewski became a Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Nowadays ”Tygodnik Powszechny” remains a Catholic weekly journal focused not only on faith and Church but also on culture as well as on social or even political issues, trying to reconcile the values of liberalism with the principles of faith. It aims at dialogue between nations and religions and presents an open, ecumenical view of Polish Catholicism.
Based on the rich cultural and spiritual heritage of the milieu of "Tygodnik Powszechny", the Foundation has developed a broad range of different activities focused on culture: literature, music, film and fine arts. Together with the City of Kraków and the Kraków Festival Office the Foundation is the organizer of the Joseph Conrad International Literature Festival - a biggest literary event in Central and Eastern Europe. The Foundation, together with the fr. J.Tischner European High School is the organizer of series of debates entitled “Uniwersytet Powszechny“ (“Universal University”) and - together with the University of Łódź – the teenagers aimed project of the promotion of literature and readership entitled “Lekcje Czytania” (“Reading lessons” ). Together with Multikino and Kijow Centrum it organises film premieres and special screenings as well as workshops, courses and educational events. The foundation also inspired the creation of the “Fryderyk” award-winning PIAZZOFORTE project, which combines Piazzolla’s music with the classical music of Bach and Chopin.
DEPARTMENT OF SLAVIC AND BALTIC LANGUAGES AND LITERATURES
University of Illinois at Chicago