Cover Osteuropa 10/2005

In Osteuropa 10/2005

Of Leaders and Strong Men
Ambivalent Factors of Personalised Politics in Poland

Gerd Meyer

Deutsche Fassung


Politics can be personalised in many ways. The effects of personalisation in a democracy are accordingly ambivalent. The personalisation of politics can mean the behaviour of the political elite, the presentation of political content in the media, the perception of politics by citizens and, finally, clientele politics. In Poland, many politicians use their office for personal gain or go around formal democratic practises so as to maintain their power. On the other hand, President Aleksander Kwaśniewski was able to use the prominence of his office and his person to integrate forces that were drifting apart, to bring more stability to Polish politics, and to create future prospects for the country.

(Osteuropa 10/2005, pp. 47–58)