Literary periodicals promoting young writers played a major role in the formation of a distinct generational consciousness during the occupation and in the post-war period. They included Sztuka i Naród [Art and the Nation] (1942–1944), Walka [Combat] and Inaczej [Contrarily] (1945), Pokolenie [ The Generation] (1946–1947), Nurt [The Current] (1947), Po prostu [ Plain and Simple] (1949–1955), Wyboje [ Bumps] (1956–1957), Zebra (1957–1958), Orientacja (1965–1971) and Nowy Wyraz [New Expression] (1972–1981). The young writers’ literary magazines were the product of the shifting political environment and generational change.
This paper addresses the public discussions among Polish scholars and social scientists which took place following the Second World War. The debate on the sociological and historical genealogy of the Polish intelligentsia started with the publication of a lecture given by the sociologist Józef Chałasiński. Covering this debate, the paper shows the way in which the literary and publicist stereotypes came to be a research question for the Social Sciences and Humanities.