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Soviet Studies

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With the declaration of martial law in December 1981 and the formal banning of Solidarity in October 1982, the Polish regime created for itself a dilemma: how to provide a channel for participation by the workers without reactivating Solidarity and without allowing that participation to assume political dimensions. The Jaruzelski leadership professed a desire to achieve reconciliation and understanding in the aftermath of the heady days of Solidarity and the depressing denouement of martial law. One of the principal means to do this was through the creation of new institutions, allegedly independent, which would absorb some of the creative and participatory energy of Solidarity, without allowing a return to what the regime claimed had been political activities by the union.


This is an electronic version of an article that was published in ‘Soviet Studies’ © 1987 Copyright University of Glasgow; Soviet Studies is now published as ‘Europe-Asia Studies’ and is available online at: