Friday, March 27, 2015

"Bieganski" in Poland in Polish. New Date.

Back in November, 2014 I mentioned that Jacek Tokarski of Wydawnictwo Wysoki Zamek planned to publish "Bieganski" in Poland in Polish in March of 2015. You can read that post here.

Mr. Tokarski has written to inform me that he will not make that date, but that he hopes that "Bieganski" will be published in Poland in Polish later this year. 

Lena Dunham Compares Her Jewish Boyfriend to Her Dog: Anti-Semitic? Funny?

Before you complain,
please realize that this is a relatively discrete photo,
compared to what else is out there. 
In the March 30, 2015 issue of The New Yorker, actress and writer Lena Dunham compares her Jewish boyfriend to a dog in a meant-to-be humorous quiz.

Lena Dunham is famous for appearing naked on TV, and for doing so in spite of weighing more than most TV stars do.

Her New Yorker quiz is a list of 35 items. Each item is meant to be funny because it could be about a dog or a Jew. Samples:

"He comes from a culture in which mothers focus every ounce of their attention on their offspring and don't acknowledge their own need for independence as women. They are sucked dry by their children, who ultimately leave them as soon as they find suitable mates.

He expects to be waited on hand and foot by the women in his life, and anything less than that makes him whiny and distant.

He doesn't tip.

He's really more of an ass man.

He has a sensitive stomach and has to take two Dramamine before entering any moving vehicle.

Every week it's some new health issue: urine crystals, sprained foot, beef allergy.

He has hair all over his body, like most males who share his background.

He once vomited on his seatmate in United business class, then ran up and down the aisle in a panic."

What is immediately apparent is that the whole thing, like Lena Dunham herself, is embarrassingly, painfully, weird, narcissistic, and unfunny. You keep waiting for it to be over but keep reading out of perverse fascination.

But is it anti-Semitic?

I'm not sure. Our culture gives people the right to mock and stereotype their own. Chris Rock on African Americans, Joan Rivers on women, David Chase on Italians.

Various blogs say yes it is anti-Semitic, including Kveller linked here.

Read Lena Dunham compare her Jewish boyfriend to a dog in The New Yorker here.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

A controversial matter

An email correspondent has sent in a couple of potentially controversial observations. I don't know if he wants to be named so I won't name him, but if he wants to name himself in the comments section that's fine with me. 

He says that he has found a couple of references to Jewish Poles welcoming invading German Nazis during WW II, or at least not appearing to be as aware as they should have been of how thoroughly and irredeemably evil the Nazis were. 

One such reference is here.

Another is here.

Of course many people thought that a civilized people like the Germans could never commit any crime so horrible as genocide, but It seems to me that by the time the Nazis invaded Poland their anti-Semitism was abundantly clear. 

Of course there would have been isolated individuals who were naive or otherwise unwise when it came to assessing the Nazi threat. 

I'm not sure of any larger meaning to these anecdotes. 

Thank You for Bieganski's New Cover

"Bieganski" has a new cover. 

Thank  you again to James Conroyd Martin, author of "Push Not the River," Karen Wyle, author of "Twin Bred," Pani F, who chooses to remain anonymous, and Eugene Sokolowski. Your donations made the new cover possible. 

Thank you! 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Yes, In the Age of Hamas & Charlie Hebdo, Poland Remains the Gold Standard in Anti-Semitism. Please Read "Bieganski." Educate Yourself. And Resist.

The Atlantic chose to illustrate its article about genocidal hatred of Jews among Muslims with an image of anti-Semitic graffiti in Poland. Of course. Their caption: "Workers wash anti-Semitic graffiti from the Holocaust memorial at the former Kraków-Płaszów concentration camp in Poland, March 13, 2010. (Associated Press)"

People who haven't got a clue, often quite well meaning, insist to me that my work on the Brute Polak stereotype is unnecessary. With time, as humanity evolves, as Poles become more modern and adopt white-collar employment, they insist, the brute Polak stereotype will disappear. No one will ever again associate anti-Semitic brutes with Poles. 

These folks, as well meaning as they are, have no idea what they are talking about. 

Bieganski, the brute, anti-Semitic Polak, is here to stay. 

The solution is for Poles to educate themselves, and to resist the stereotype. A good first step is buying and reading the book, here.

A good second step is to contemplate the current sorry state of Polonian organizing, as described here

I'm posting all this right now because I just stumbled across yet another iteration of Bieganski, this time in The Atlantic, an influential and respected publication. 

A little over a hundred years ago, The Atlantic published respected and influential articles that depicted Poles as near animals who should not be allowed as immigrants in the United States. You can read about a couple of those articles in "Bieganski." 

In its April, 2015 issue, The Atlantic covers genocidal Muslim hatred of Jews in Europe, hatred so fierce The Atlantic asks, "Is It Time for the Jews to Leave Europe?"

Poland is mentioned twice. 

First mention:

"When the survivors of the Shoah emerged from the camps, and from hiding places in cities and forests across Europe, they were met on occasion by pogroms. (In Poland, for instance, some Christians were unhappy to see their former Jewish neighbors return home, and so arranged their deaths.)"

Second mention:

"Workers wash anti-Semitic graffiti from the Holocaust memorial at the former Kraków-Płaszów concentration camp in Poland, March 13, 2010. (Associated Press)"

Because of course an article about genocidal Muslim hatred of Jews is illustrated with an image of anti-Semitic graffiti on a Holocaust memorial in Poland. 

Get used to it, Polonia. You are the gold standard in anti-Semitism, and indeed in all hate. 

Read "Bieganski." Organize. Resist. 

The Atlantic article is here

Saturday, March 21, 2015

The Color of Courage: A Boy at War

The Color of Courage Finalist in Prestigious Benjamin Franklin Awards

WWII Diary of Boy Soldier Recognized in 2 Categories

Los Angeles, California, March 18, 2015 — The Color of Courage—A Boy at War: The World War II Diary of Julian Kulski (Aquila Polonica Publishing, Nov. 2014) has just been named as a finalist for the 2015 Benjamin Franklin Award in two different categories: Autobiography/Memoirs, and Interior Design (1-2 Color).

The winner will be announced in a ceremony held in Austin, Texas, the evening of April 10, 2015. Now in its 27th year, the Benjamin Franklin Award, sponsored by the Independent Book Publishers Association (IBPA), is the premier awards competition in independent publishing, recognizing excellence in independent publishing. There were nearly 1,400 entries this year.

In his Foreword to this remarkable diary of a boy soldier during World War II, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Lech Walesa calls The Color of Courage “a superb lesson of humanity.” The Chief Rabbi of Poland, Rabbi Michael Schudrich, writing the Introduction to the book, praises The Color of Courage as “an inspiring read.” Dr. Zbigniew Brzezinski, Center for Strategic & International Studies, says: “Compelling, readable, and very moving.”

“We’re excited to learn that The Color of Courage is a finalist in two categories for the 2015 Ben Franklin Awards,” said Aquila Polonica president Terry Tegnazian. “This is a rare look at World War II through the eyes of a young boy soldier that stays with you long after you close the book.” To learn more:

Julian Kulski was a 10-year-old Boy Scout living in Warsaw when the Germans invaded Poland in 1939. His diary follows his wartime experience from ages 10 to 16. He quickly begins his own personal war against the Germans with small acts of sabotage but soon, at age 12, is recruited into the Underground Army by his Scoutmaster, where he is trained in weapons handling and military tactics. Kulski undertakes a secret mission into the Warsaw Ghetto, is captured by the Gestapo, sentenced to Auschwitz, beaten, rescued, fights in a Commando unit during the vicious street fighting of the 1944 Warsaw Uprising, and ends as a 16-year-old German POW...finally risking a dash for freedom onto an American truck instead of waiting for “liberation” by the Soviets. Watch the book trailer:

Kulski’s diary is enriched by more than 150 photos and illustrations, 13 maps, and 11 “Digital Extras,” which are short videos created by Aquila Polonica from historical film and audio material that bring Kulski’s story to life in an unprecedented way. Watch sample Digital Extras:

Interior design, typesetting and cover art are the work of talented Los Angeles designer Ewa Wojciak, Senior Lecturer of Fine Arts at the USC Roski School of Art and Design. Although this is her first book for Aquila Polonica, Wojciak has an extensive background as a designer and creative director primarily for the entertainment industry, with a client list that includes Disney, CBS, HBO, Sony, Universal Pictures and Fox, as well as in advertising agencies and print media. In The Color of Courage, Wojciak brings a fresh, contemporary look to this historical memoir, with pull quotes that draw the reader through the text, and an innovative use of thumbnail images and QR codes augmented by URLs to incorporate the multimedia Digital Extras into the print book.

Aquila Polonica is an award-winning independent publisher based in Los Angeles, specializing in publishing, in English, the World War II experience of Poland—the first of the Allies to fight Hitler. See more at:

Thursday, March 19, 2015

James Pula Reviews "Bieganski"

James Pula has reviewed "Bieganski" in H-Net. Link here.

You can order "Bieganski" on Amazon here.