Course overview

Now and again Poland emerges in the news expressing concerns about Russia’s ambitions but are these only recent or do they have any historical precedents? Are there for instance any lessons to be learnt from Poland’s past in light of the current situation in Ukraine? Discovering how Poland developed and survived, this course outlines why it has fluctuated between ascendancy, vulnerability and suffering against the background of Germany and Russia. Tracing its emergence as a key medieval political player through to its disappearance, re-emergence & tragedy of 1939, the course explores Poland’s often overlooked story.

Course description

Although Hitler’s invasion almost annihilated the country, there is much more to Poland’s past. By comparison to the last war, its earlier history is relatively unknown. Like Russia, Poland spanned the civilisations of both East and West. Yet Poland’s image is usually that of a frontier state between the west and Russia with a Polish preference for wanting to be considered as western European. But did Poland always turn to the west and how did Poland define itself? What were the formative factors that made & sustained Poland? How, for instance, were Queen Christina of Sweden, the Cossacks and Catherine the Great of Russia involved? Even the famous Napoleon had a hand developing Poland’s history. Some have claimed that even though Poland all but disappeared from the map, it never lost its sense of identity. So, what for example was the Polish Question and how did that affect the rest of Europe – including Britain?

Beginning with its earliest origins and what the name ‘Poland’ actually means, this course explores how Poland managed to dominate, contain and then survive the political competitions and struggles with its neighbours within the context of what later became the ‘Polish Question’.

What financial support is available?

We don't want anything to stand in your way when it comes to bringing Adult learning within reach so if you need anything to support you to achieve your goals then speak to one of our education experts during your enrolment journey. Most of our courses are government funded but if you don't qualify or need alternative financial help to access them then let us know.

What other support is available?

All of our digital content, teaching and learning activities and assessments are designed to be accessible so if you need any additional support you can discuss this with the education experts during your enrolment journey and we will do all we can to make sure you have optimal access.

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