Abstracts, nr 1 (5) 2023

Luca Clerici

Orio Vergani – not only a reporter

In July 2022, Vergani’s nephews donated a collection of important papers by Orio Vergani and his sons Guido and Leonardo to APICE (Archivi della Parola, dell’Immagine e della Comunicazione Editoriale), a vital institution belonging to The University of Milan. This donation represents an excellent opportunity to study Vergani’s interest in different fields: reportage, photojournalism, literature besides art and literary criticism, painting,
cinema, the radio, advertising, wine and gastronomy. Everyone can find a compelling and complete portrait of Vergani studying his unpublished writings.

Gloria Politi

Reportage in the Manner of Tiziano Terzani’s „Goodnight, Mister Lenin" and the Epiphanies of Places

In this paper, Gloria Politi embarks upon an analysis of Goodnight, Mister Lenin seen as an interpretation of the genre of reportage in the peculiar way by its author Tiziano Terzani. In terms of methodology, this approach draws on theories of literary criticism, textual hermeneutics and narratology. The analysis shows how the depiction of the flow of events before the reader’s eyes reveals an inner gaze that, according to Pavel Florensky, almost creates a figurative mark, just like the impressions conveyed by poetry. Terzani’s word thus expresses all its evocative potential as a narrative transfer of the rendering of space in the visual arts.

Wojciech Soliński

Umberto Eco – a Professione Reporter?

Wojciech Soliński analyzes 2008 Polish translations of two reportages by Umberto Eco, written and published in 1968 after his stay in Prague, during the intervention of the Warsaw Pact troops, and in Warsaw, after the March events. Soliński’s interpretation of these reportages is accompanied by reflections on the art of reportage and on the theory of mass communication, etc., present in numerous works by Eco scholars and novels such as The Name of the Rose (Il nome della rosa) or Numero Zero. Remarks on the art of reportage can also be easily found in journalistic texts, including occasional texts (e.g., in the Introduction to the Italian and Polish editions of Marco Polo’s Description of the World). Today’s reportages reveal all the advantages and disadvantages of this type of writing activity, which are not only the result of the temporal and spatial distance.

Sylwia Szarejko

Lampedusa as a “Gateway to Europe”: the Shaping of the Island’s Image in Italian Reportage through the Prism of the Phenomenon of African Immigration

This article is an attempt to familiarize the readers with Italian reportages that deal with the subject of African migrations to the Apennine Peninsula. In recent years, this phenomenon has been described and analyzed by many writers and journalists; however, this article places special emphasis on the representation of the island of Lampedusa, which belongs to the archipelago of the Italian Pelagie Islands and has in the last 30 years become not only the proverbial “Gateway to Europe”, but also a place that testifies to the issue of illegal migrations. When analyzing the reportages about Lampedusa, the most interesting aspect (from the Polish perspective, at least) seems to be the Italian angle on the “problem of the island.”

Katarzyna Frukacz

When the Reporter Is Searching. On the Hybridism of Jarosław Mikołajewski’s Book „Cień w cień. Za cieniem Zuzanny Ginczanki" [„Shadow to Shadow. Behind the Shadow of Zuzanna Ginczanka"]

The paper discusses Jarosław Mikołajewski’s documentary work inspired by Polish-Jewish poet Zuzanna Ginczanka. The analysis aims at identifying two dimensions of the searching process, which appears as the main theme of the story. The first aspect of this search is constituted by tracing some facts and conjectures on Ginczanka, with special emphasis placed on the parallels between her and selected themes from Italian culture.
The other dimension indicates the way in which Mikołajewski deconstructs the form of literary reportage and hybridizes the book by mixing different genres in it.

Ewa Sławek

Wojciech Tochman and Wojciech Jagielski: the Styles of Contemporary War Reports

The article formulates a thesis that two eminent Polish writers covering war situations represent two different literary styles (idiostyles): Tochman’s can be subsumed under the term „minimalist-rhetorical", whereas Jagielski’s could be described as „metaphorical". To prove this thesis, the article makes use of linguistic analytical tools to interpret such works as Tochman’s „Like eating stone. Surviving the Past in Bosnia", „The Crowing of Cocks and the Weeping of Dogs" and Jagielski’s „Praying for Rain", „Towers of Stone.

The Battle of Wills in Chechnya". Tochman’s minimalism results from a creative treatment of syntax, the use of most basic syntactic constructions and verbless sentences as well as straight-forward announcement of facts. On the other hand, Jagielski’s effort focuses on semantics, hence the abundance of metaphors, comparisons, and epithets.

Igor Borkowski

The Distinct Features of Coverage Reporting after February 24, 2022, on the Example of “Tygodnik Powszechny”

Igor Borowski analyses techniques and tools used in reporting on the military conflict following Russia’s attack on Ukraine (February 24, 2022), on the example of reportage materials published in the Polish weekly “Tygodnik Powszechny” (or “The Common Weekly”). The analysis shows thematic threads, geopolitical focus on selected areas of Ukraine, and the accurate selection of biographical examples, easy to decipher and identify for the readers of this socio-political magazine.

Izabella Adamczewska-Baranowska

Nonfiction Utopias: “Reporting the Dreams” in the Context of the Reportage Triangle Theory

This article is an attempt to apply Małgorzata Czermińska’s theory of the autobiographical triangle to the study of literary journalism, in which the worldview is the outcome of faithfulness to the fact, the author’s experience and literary representation. In this theory, there are three generic types of reportage depending on the dominant feature, i.e., witness, confession or challenge. Izabella Adamczewska-Baranowska defines her concept of the reportage triangle based on the example of selected contemporary utopian writing: Dylan Evans’s The Utopia Experiment, Urszula Jabłońska’s Światy wzniesiemy nowe [New Worlds We Shall Build], Katarzyna Boni’s Auroville. Miasto z marzeń [Auroville. A Dream City], and Matthew Hongoltz-Hetling’s A Libertarian Walks Into a Bear. These texts on intentional communities selected for analysis serve to highlight the importance of the adopted point of view and intersubjectivization. While the subject of the reportage is the surplus included in the reportage itself, the reportage also tries to attain the universality of the literary work.

Katarzyna Ostrowska

Linguistic and Stylistic Reflections on the Typology of the Contemporary Polish Book Reportage (Based on Selected Texts)

Katarzyna Ostrowska’s aim in this article is to present a typology of contemporary Polish book reportage based on linguistic and stylistic criteria on the example of three texts awarded with the Beata Pawlak Prize: Witold Szabłowski’s Zabójca z miasta moreli. Reportaże z Turcji [A Killer from the City of Apricots. Reports from Turkey], Bartosz Jastrzębski and Jędrzej Morawiecki’s Krasnojarsk zero [Krasnoyarsk Zero], and Dariusz Rosiak’s Ziarno i krew. Podróż śladami bliskowschodnich chrześcijan [Grain and Blood. A Journey in the Footsteps of Middle Eastern Christians]. Ostrowska refers to the previous classifications of the reportage genre by Jacek Maziarski, Jadwiga Litwin, and Kazimierz Wolny-Zmorzyński and goes on to propose her own typology in reference to the reportages under scrutiny by taking into account the presence of specific features of functional styles: artistic, journalistic, and scientific.

Teodoro Katinis

Defining rhetoric: Sperone Speroni’s „Dell’arte oratoria"

This contribution focuses on Sperone Speroni’s text Dell’arte oratoria (On the Oratory Art), one of his short treatises dedicated to rhetoric. The main aim is to define the different aspects of the text’s style and content that make it a relevant source for exploring Speroni’s rhetorical thought. Combining classical sources with his original perspective, Speroni attempts to support rhetorical art by using rhetorical means. This text was not meant to be read by the public and it reveals an erratic argumentation looking for efficacious definitions of oratory to defend it from its detractors.

Aleksandra Paliczuk 

Between thinking and acting there is speaking. Some reflections on the nature of speech act

This article investigates one of the main notions of pragmatic linguistics, namely, the theory of speech acts. Aleksandra Paliczuk analyzes relations between thought, word, and action. The project involves examining the structure of language and of its components through the ideas of different linguistic schools. It aims to answer the question posed in one of John L. Austin’s works, How to Do Things with Words (1955/1962). It endeavors to explain the capability or the possibility of understanding some words, expressions or sentences, even if their literal meaning differs from the intended one. This article defines the concept of the speech act, also in relation to the contemporary possibilities of communicating in the virtual world, and explains why it entails the three components of thought, word, and action. As a result, we find out that there are many complex relations regarding different human abilities and other forms of activity.

Simone Guagnelli

Concreteness as a procedure. Contribution to a history of Memorial

The present article offers a brief history of the Russian non-governmental organisation Memorial, a recent winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, from its origins in the 1980s to the present day. It also proposes an attempt to create a bibliography which could be used for a larger monographic volume, a more detailed work capable of going into more detail about the founding instances of the most important cultural movement of resistance in Russian and post-Soviet society. The nearly simultaneous invasion of Ukraine and the banning of Memorial make the publication of such a work urgent. It would not only outline the organisation’s development but also become a manifesto of concrete common action for a new Europe arising at the end of the conflict, which could thrive on the shared themes of historical memory and the defense of civil rights

Paweł Rogalski

Snow Will Fall before Siberia Thaws. Before or after the Empire?: Jędrzej Morawiecki: „Szuga. Krajobraz po imperium." Czytelnik, Warszawa 2022, 280 s

Through a critical analysis of J. Morawiecki’s Szuga. Krajobraz po imperium [Szuga. Landscape after the Empire], Paweł Rogalski ponders a number of questions: Does Russia still exist in the 21st century in the imperial discourse? Has the superpower paradigm, as a certain manifestation of anarchy and a fallen myth, not already been ruined or exhausted? Is the empire an episode necessary historically to balance forces in a global crisis? Is the war in Ukraine (2014 and 2022) perhaps the “new-old” founding murder of the Eastern civilization, incorporating the model of the Russian empire? Does ideology as a glue, instead of positively constructing the subjectivity of the community, contribute to building a new, dangerous phantasm of the empire? In this context, the travel narrative authenticates the message by reaching abandoned and blurry places, where the encountered human subject generates not only events and adventures, but is a record of ideological traces left on the body and the psyche. As Czesław Niedzielski wrote: “In all varieties of reportage prose, the identity of the speaking subject and the author (regardless of the form of the reporting) is one of the basic premises determining the documentary and, most of all, the authentic qualities of the genre”