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профессор Института политических наук Варшавского университета
Publication date: 2019-12-27
Studia Politologiczne 2013;30
The text is devoted to the political culture of the Polish society after 1989. To show its specificity, the historic models of the political culture of the Polish society were referred to: both from the period of the First Republic of Poland and from the time of the People’s Republic of Poland. From the historic perspective a thesis is put forward that new significant phenomena emerged in the political culture of the Polish society after 1989. Certain values and behaviour models stimulate reforms of the system and favour the shaping of consolidated democracy, while others have a dysfunctional impact. On the example of trust in public institutions it may be stated that changes in the political culture took place within the axiological and the evaluative-affective components. The citizens’ expectations towards politicians rose and their criticism in assessing them increased. This might be a factor stimulating the improvement of the quality of democracy. For some time, a certain crisis of public confidence could be seen in the Polish parliamentary system. This is the more negative side of the ongoing processes. This does not mean, however, that the Polish society rejects pluralist democracy with its mechanisms. A huge part of the political elites is negatively assessed. In the opinion of many citizens they do not fulfill the standards required by the well-developed parliamentary democracy. The role of the new media in political communication is increasing and this will be a factor influencing the political culture. New opportunities should potentially favour the processes of improving the functioning of the democratic system, e.g. by stimulating the public debate. At the moment, however, it is more likely that the increasing use of the Internet in the field of politics as well as the development of the political culture will follow the scenario called technorealism. The people who are active in a variety of domains of social life, involving the field of politics, and who use the Internet will have greater and better opportunities to both obtain and create the information concerning politics. The people who are not very active and who are not interested in politics will not be encouraged by the Internet either to get interested in this field of social life or to participate therein. Besides, a considerable group of citizens still does not use the Internet. It may be called a group of digital marginalization. For them the opportunities of political information and participation provided by the new media are still Utopia.
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