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Corinne Fournier Kiss

The Polish dimension of the Czech feminist journal Ženské Listy


The first Czech feminist journal Ženské Listy was born in 1871 thanks to the initiative of one of the Women's Associations. The purpose of this journal was to familiarize Czech women with all issues related to the progress of the women's question – be it in the field of education, morality, health, aesthetics or culture.

If the journal flattered itself for having taken stock of the situation of women throughout the whole of Europe, one can not help noticing, however, that a place of choice was reserved for the achievements of Polish women, at least in the last decades of the nineteenth century: letters by women from Warsaw, articles dedicated to Polish women's literature (Orzeszkowa, Konopnicka), to Polish female pedagogy (Ta?ska-Hoffmanova, W. Marrené) and to Polish girls' schools, literally abound in the journal.

How to explain this obvious orientation toward the neighbouring nation? Should it be attributed to a deliberate choice on the part of Eliška Krásnohorská, chief editor of Ženské Listy from 1875 to 1911 and who never made a secret of her polonophilia? Or were the characteristics of the Polish women's movement of that time so different from those of other European movements that they really deserved this specific attention ?

SvD, November 2012

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