video record
Media not available in the Digital Archive
This programme's concern is the politics of revolt. During December 1970 and January 1971, parts of Poland were in revolt. The outbreak of the revolt was due to the dissatisfaction of certain group...s with their living standards and to the existence of inequality within Polish society. By concentrating on the uprising in the shipyards of Northern Poland, this programme traces the form the revolt took. By the use of stills taken during the revolt, Swedish film shot just after it and tapes of a confrontation between workers and Polish leaders, a picture is built up of the political nature of the revolt. The programme demonstrates that the intensity of the revolt was caused not just by the economic grievances of the workers, but also by the Polish political structure through which the revolt operated. It is the relationship of the revolt to political structure that is central to this programme.
Metadata describing this Open University video programme
Module code and title: D231, Comparative government and politics
Item code: D231; 05
First transmission date: 09-06-1974
Published: 1974
Rights Statement:
Restrictions on use:
Duration: 00:23:52
+ Show more...
Producer: Francis Sealey
Contributors: Paul Lewis; Richard McNeff; Tony McEwan; John Labonowski
Publisher: BBC Open University
Keyword(s): Poland; Politics; Solidarity; Social unrest
Footage description: Lewis introduces the programme which will deal with the Polish revolt of 1970/71. He explains the format of the programme, which will use actors reading extracts from strikers' meetings and interviews. Lewis explains briefly the reasons for the revolt and what happened. Shots of the shipyards, workers on strike, wrecked buildings etc. Lewis introduces a section dealing with the strikers' demands. McNeff reads them out. A polish factory organisation, such as the shipyards, is examined by Lewis to show where pressures and power were to be found. Organisational chart of the structure. Lewis states the responses the workers received from the bureaucracy. The following sequence gives extracts from the strikers' meetings. Laborowski complains of the supervisors and bosses in general. McEwan wants information on salaries. McNeff relates an incident between a department head and the Strike Committee. McEwan again makes a statement about relative salaries. Laborowski describes an incident involving Party officials. McEwan and Laborowski again make statements about the lack of contact between party and workers. McNeff wants to know 'why the bloodshed?' and also complains of the party officials. Lewis examines the situation in more detail, showing how it developed and how the Party reacted until Gierek had decided to meet the workers' grievances. Stills of the revolt, newspaper cuttings, pictures of Gomulka and Gierek. Interview with a local official in Gdansk who outlines the reasons for the revolt and the extent of the damage done. Lewis sums up on the relationship of revolt to political structure. Over stills of the revolt in Poland and film of street musicians, more extracts from the strikers' meetings are read. Credits.
Master spool number: 6HT/71001
Production number: 00525_2054
Videofinder number: 100
Available to public: no