Zdzisław Jagodziński (1927-2001) was director of the Polish Library in London from 1973 to his death. In 1940 he was deported with his parents to Kazakhstan by the Soviet authorities. Released in 1941, he joined the Polish army units created in the Soviet Union by General Władysław Anders. Evacuated to Persia and later to Palestine, Jagodziński attended the Junak Cadets School run by the Polish Army until 1947 when he moved to Great Britain. He received his BA in economy and sociology from the National University of Ireland in Galway and then worked as a bank clerk in London until 1970. He also studied history at the Polish University Abroad in London where he received PhD in 1972. While directing the Polish Library in London, Jagodziński was one of the leading animators of Polish culture, education, and historiography in exile. He expanded library and archival collections turning his institution into a research center. Jagodziński was instrumental in organizing legal and illegal shipments of books published in exile and in the West to People's Poland. The Polish Library in London was one of several institutions in the West that sent books that were often banned by communist censorship. This action was part of the larger Cold War initiative coordinated by the International Literary Centre (ILC) in New York, co-organized by the Congress of Cultural Freedom, and secretly sponsored by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) since the 1950s. In exchange, Jagodziński collected Polish underground publications launched by political opposition in socialist Poland. A native of the eastern borderlands lost to the Soviet Union after World War II, Jagodziński was a stauch anti-communist who refused to accept the loss of these territories. He received numerous prestigious prizes awarded by emigre and Polish insitutions.
Platt, Dobrosława, Jan Wiktor Sienkiewicz, Teresa Halikowska, and Adrian Smith. Wspólny wysiłek - wspólny sukces: 50 lat POSKu : wystawa = Community effort, community achievement : 50 years of POSK : exhibition. Londyn: Polski Ośrodek Społeczno-Kulturalny, 2014.
Reisch, Alfred A. Hot Books in the Cold War: The CIA-Funded Secret Book Distribution Program Behind the Iron Curtain. 2013.
Saunders, Frances Stonor. The Cultural Cold War: The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters. New York: The New Press, 2013.
Szmidt, Jadwiga, and Zdzisław Eugeniusz Wałaszewski. Zdzisław Jagodziński jakim Go pamiętamy. Londyn: Biblioteka Polska POSK, 2003.
Wrede, Maria, Jadwiga Szmidt, Magdalena Bocheńska-Chojecka, and Grzegorz Pisarski. Przewodnik po zespołach rękopisów Biblioteki Polskiej POSK w Londynie. Warszawa: Biblioteka Narodowa, 2006.
Last edited on: 2017-04-26 15:00:41