A Concise History of Poland by Jerzy Lukowski (University of Birmingham)
Poland is a tenacious survivor-state: it was wiped off the map in 1795, resurrected after the First World War, apparently annihilated again in the Second World War, and reduced to satellite status of the Soviet Union after 1945. Yet it emerged in the vanguard of resistance to the USSR in the 1980s, albeit as a much more homogeneous entity than it had been in its multi-ethnic past. This book outlines Poland's turbulent and complex history, from its medieval Christian origins to the reassertion of that Christian and European heritage after forty-five years of communism. It describes Poland's transformation since 1989, and explains how Poland navigated its way into a new Commonwealth of Nations in the European Union. Recent years have witnessed significant changes within Poland, Eastern Europe and the wider world. This new edition reflects on these changes, and examines the current issues facing a Poland which some would accuse of being out of touch with 'European values'.