"I was mad about it all, about the ban": emotional spaces of solidarity in the Poznan march of equality

Anna Gruszczynska*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In this paper, I focus on the spatial and emotional constitution of protest in the context of gay and lesbian public activism in Poland, on the basis of a case study of the Poznan March of Equality. The event took place on 19 November 2005, despite an earlier ban issued by the mayor of the city, following the recent rise of right-wing parties in power. The brutal break-up of the peaceful demonstration by the police sparked a discussion on broader issues of freedom of assembly and the state of Polish democracy. Through the narratives of March organizers, I look at the ways in which the activists engaged in the practices of collective memory work and emotion work, focusing specifically on anger, fear and euphoria. I call for discussion of emotions of public protest in the context of sexual citizenship as well as argue that it is necessary to examine the space-time scale of these emotions. In particular, I look at the ways in which the spatial and emotional context of collective memory work enabled the activists to inscribe the event into the narrative of Polish 1980s Solidarity activism and sustain activism despite an unfavourable political context.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-51
Number of pages8
JournalEmotion, Space and Society
Volume2
Issue number1
Early online date9 Jun 2009
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2009

Keywords

  • collective memory
  • emotions
  • gay and lesbian
  • Poland
  • solidarity movement
  • space

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