Projekt Spięcie – Editorial

By Jędrzej Malko

Talking doesn’t come easy to us in Poland. Talking about Poland comes even more difficult. The problem is not new, but it has grown even more acute lately. For many reasons, the common ground is being broken up into ever smaller plots, partitioned with ever taller walls. The public sphere is being replaced by communal bubbles, and inner monologues in individual circles supplant the dialogue between people of diverse views. These phenomena have been described many times already, and I doubt if I could say anything new on the subject. But these days, perhaps it is not so much a question of saying anything new, as of saying old things in novel ways.

“Spięcie” is such a project, an experiment in co-operation between editorial boards of five magazines which, although deeply divided, are united in their readiness to start this unusual conversation. Every few weeks, the Jagielloński24, Kontakt, Krytyka Polityczna, Kultura Liberalna and Nowa Konfederacja will select a fresh subject to discuss, and the five resultant texts will be published simultaneously on all five portals. The authors will no longer be able to write exclusively for their regular, long-converted audiences. Readers who return to their accustomed portals will be confronted with new authors and new points of view.

It will likely cost us all some effort to conduct this conversation, but the cost of not talking to one another is also significant. And the pain of conversing offers some hope, however fragile. A hope of livelier stirrings of thought, of learning something new, of rebuilding connective tissue, so depleted in society these days. It is not about discovering that, at the end of the day, we are in agreement and “the truth lies somewhere in the middle”. It is simply worthwhile cultivating a place where we can disagree while remaining members of one community, a place where we can attempt to trust that, even though our perceptions of the common good may differ, we care for it equally sincerely on all sides.

Statements by participants of Projekt Spięcie

“In recent years mainstream media are going downhill. Many media outlets are enlisting on this or that side of the political debate and add fuel to the fire of partisan disputes. Political opponents are perceived not as rivals, but as enemies, or traitors. Spięcie is an answer to that problem.”

– Jarema Piekutowski, Nowa Konfederacja.

“I think that at a time when the government is often seen as dismantling democratic standards, creating a space for a rational dialogue between diverse groups with different political affiliations is of crucial importance for the future of democracy in our country.”

– Łukasz Pawłowski, Kultura Liberalna

“Other magazines often are represented by men and we didn’t want the project to become an all male panel, therefore Spięcie motivated us to invite more female authors to write for Krytyka Polityczna.”

– Agnieszka Wiśniewska, Krytyka Polityczna

“Spięcie is all about bursting social media bubbles. Readers are confronted with new vatange points and new arguments. That’s what we’re trying to do, create a media space in which people can exchange opinions and in which different points of view are validated – instead of having a space in which one indisputable truth about something is transmitted to the viewers or readers. Sometimes we also discover that we agree on some issues and this can become a point of departure for designing new public policies.”

– Szymon Rębowski, Magazyn Kontakt

All people involved in Projekt Spięcie

Editors in chief from all involved magazines:

  • Dudkiewicz Ignacy & Tomaszewski Misza (Magazyn Kontakt)
  • Kuisz Jarosław (Kultura Liberalna)
  • Radziejwski Bartłomiej (Nowa Konfederacja)
  • Trudnowski Piotr (Klub Jagielloński)
  • Wiśniewska Agnieszka (Krytyka Polityczna)

Editors and coordinators of the project at each magazine:

  • Blich Slawek (Krytyka Polityczna)
  • Olejak Karolina (Klub Jagielloński)
  • Pawłowski Łukasz (Kultura Liberalna)
  • Piekutowski Jarema (Nowa Konfederacja)
  • Rębowski Szymon (Magazyn Kontakt)
  • Sękowski Stefan (Nowa Konfederacja)
  • Wiśniewska Agnieszka (Krytyka Polityczna)

Project coordinator:

  • Malko Jędrzej


  • Bertram Łukasz
  • Błędowska Magdalena
  • Bodziony Jakub
  • Brzyski Bartosz
  • Cieplak Anna
  • Cywiński Paweł
  • Diduszko-Zyglewska Agata
  • Dobrowolska Anna
  • Dudkiewicz Ignacy
  • Fejfer Kamil
  • Frejlak Hanna
  • Jesionowski Piotr
  • Kasia Katarzyna
  • Kaszczyszyn Piotr
  • Kędzierski Marcin
  • Kobeszko Łukasz
  • Kołodyńska-Magdziarz Natalia
  • Kuisz Jarosław
  • Libura Maria
  • Lipiński Kamil
  • Maksymowicz Stanisław
  • Matlak Michał
  • Matyja Rafał
  • Mazur Krzysztof
  • Mrzygłód Iza
  • Musiałek Pawel
  • Olejak Karolina
  • Onyszkiewicz Maciek
  • Pawłowski Łukasz
  • Petelczyc Janina
  • Piekutowski Jarema
  • Płachetka Wojciech
  • Puto Kaja
  • Rębowski Szymon
  • Sadura Przemysław
  • Sawczuk Tomasz
  • Sękowski Stefan
  • Sutowski Michał
  • Szulecki Kacper
  • Tomaszewski Misza
  • Trudnowski Piotr
  • Wiśniewska Agnieszka
  • Zakroczymski Stanisław