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Podgorska, Joanna

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5 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

Polityka - Poland | 14/09/2015

Abortion debate just an election topic

The Polish parliament, or Sejm, rejected a Catholic civic initiative aimed at further tightening the country's abortion laws for the fourth time on Friday. The debate on the issue is nothing but an election spectacle, the centre-left news portal Polityka Online believes: "Once again the whole thing ended in an absurd debate because such projects will never gain a majority in the Sejm. Now the topic will be exploited for the election campaign. ... Parliament was practically empty when the debate took place, and it always follows the same old routine. The supporters evoke the children who are murdered. Then the deputy marshal of the Sejm, Jerzy Wenderlich, calls on them to tone down their language. Then he is accused of censoring the debate."

Polityka Online - Poland | 28/01/2013

Backwards Poland rejects same-sex marriage

The Polish parliament rejected a new law on registered partnerships for homosexuals on Friday. Prime Minister Donald Tusk was outvoted by the conservative wing of his own party on the issue. The vote highlights Poland's backwardness, the left-liberal news website Polityka Online stresses: "And once again, the ritualistic incantation of an attack on the traditional family and moral order of society has won the day. ... Yet in the civilised world the regulation of same-sex relationships has become standard. At present gays and lesbians can get married in seven European countries (Holland, Belgium, Spain, Sweden, Norway, Iceland and Portugal). In other states of Western Europe excepting Italy this issue was regulated by a law on partnerships under civil law. ... Nothing is likely to change any more in this legislative period because not even Prime Minister Tusk's intervention achieved anything. Poland remains a white stain on the map of civilised countries in this respect."

Polityka Online - Poland | 09/11/2011

A victory for Poland's female politicians

The Polish parliament on Tuesday named Ewa Kopacz as its first female Marshal, and with Wanda Nowicka appointed as her deputy another woman has joined the Presidium. But it was a hard-fought battle against the forces of conservatism, the online edition of the left-liberal news magazine Polityka notes: "We have two women speakers in the Presidium. That is another small revolution for Poland, but it was by no means easy. First there were the absurd accusations against Ewa Kopacz [by the conservative opposition PiS party] that she didn't do enough to clear up the Smolensk catastrophe. But that was just the prelude to what Wanda Nowicka had to go through. ... She failed in the first vote, primarily because of resistance from her colleagues in the [liberal-conservative governing party] Civic Platform. Because it was clear from the outset how the PiS would react. ... Then it took a personal intervention by Prime Minister Donald Tusk to decide the second vote vote."

Polityka Online - Poland | 11/10/2010

Poles hinder sexual education

According to a recent report by the private education institute Grupa Edukatorów Seksualnych Ponton, for young people in Poland sex is a mixture of pornography and superstitions like the claim that the first time people have sex they are infertile. The online edition of news magazine Polityka says society and the politicians are to blame: "The Polish state acts as if Polish teenagers don't have sex. This sounds morally correct and somehow decent and harmonises with prevalent values. So sex education for the young is superfluous. It's enough for the Church to tell them that you don't have sex before marriage. The rest they can learn at their premarital lessons [obligatory for Polish couples wishing to have a church wedding and are subject to fees]. And when responsible teenagers want to protect themselves against unwanted pregnancy and turn to a gynaecologist for help, the latter sends them back to their parents as instructed."

Polityka - Poland | 27/06/2007

The history of Jewish life in Poland

This week the foundation stone for the new Museum of the History of Polish Jews was laid in Warsaw - right next to the monument commemorating the Warsaw Ghetto uprising. Jerzy Halbersztadt, founding director of the museum, explains in an interview with Joanna Podgorska why this museum is so important in a country which was home to 3.5 million Jews before the Holocaust. He points out that the goal is "visitors to the museum should include both Poles familiar with Jewish history, and Jewish tourists who want to see how the Poles present the Jewish legacy. Both are to meet here. They can observe each other's reactions. The museum can serve to demystify these relations... Here, they [the Jewish tourists from abroad] can see how the state of Israel has roots on the River Vistula. For two centuries the unique Jewish parliament worked here. It is here that secular Jewish life began, and here that the phenomenon of Chassidism took root and developed."

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