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Slavic Review

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Over the last three years, the Polish United Workers' Party has suffered a major crisis, the most substantial crisis of any Communist party in any Communist party state. The disintegration of the party was at least partly responsible for both the development of Solidarity in the summer of 1980 and the imposition of martial law in December 1981. The lack of trust in the party and its authoritarian and unrepresentative character led the workers to demand an institution more responsive to their own needs. But the growth of Solidarity during 1981 and the continuing disintegration and fragmentation of the party led the military to preempt the leading role of the party in 1982.


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