Winter 1961 • Vol. XXIII No. 1 Nonfiction |

Americans in Poland: II. Through Foreign Eyes

"Which of the new novels you have read this year most impressed you?" The newspaper Polityka asked this question of about 100 Polish writers both in 1959 and in 1960. To the surprise of no one except the Warsaw correspondent for Le Monde, American authors came out on top. In 1959 Hemingway, Faulkner, and Wilder took the first three places and in 1960 it was Faulkner (with sixteen per cent of the vote), Wilder, and Steinbeck. Polityka is read by the Marxist elite: journalists, politicians, and economists. While not an official newspaper, it nevertheless attempts to represent the Party viewpoint. The Cracow weekly, Tygodnich Powzechny, is, on the other hand, a Catholic newspaper which paid the price of independence by being suspended from 1953 to1956. For several years this paper has been carrying reports on the bestsellers in Poland—and here again it is the Americans who prevail, with Hemingway, Steinbeck, Irwin Shaw, and even Truman Capote frequently dominating the list. The s

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