Letter to Władysław Tatarkiewicz written 30.01.1962

Cracow, 30/1/1962

Dear Władysław,

                       I apologise for not having replied yet to your two letters. After receiving the first I started to read Mr Csató’s article; I read half and even wrote a letter to you, but then became convinced that I had to read the article until the end, because I had the impression that the author had actually taken certain theses from my own article, and afterwards directed them, as it were, against me. Thus I decided to read my own article, written several years ago, once again, to see what exactly was contained in it. Unfortunately, the overwhelming number of my classes prevented me from carrying out this intention.

            Then I received a letter regarding the question of Mr Pospieszalski. I wrote to him that he should come round to talk and tell me what was on his mind. It turned out that he was looking for a reviewer for his paper, a doctoral dissertation, because he had no open line of communication with, or even a positive opinion from, Prof. Zachwatowicz. I told him that I wouldn’t be able to read his work before July of this year[O1] . He didn’t make a good impression on me in the course of the conversation, and I don’t think I should deal with this at all. I also told him that first he had to clarify the situation with Prof. Zachwatowicz, and only when the professor took a positive position would I try to find time to read his work.

            So far I haven’t seen Aesthetics vol. II. It’s not in Cracow bookstores, and neither the Editorial Board or the publishers have sent it to me. In the meantime, I promised Markiewicz that I’d write an answer to his article, which at one point I read in proofs. Now, though, I don’t remember it, and have to wait until I get the whole volume. Morawski announced that the Editorial Board would send me Lissa’s article on the topic of my views on musical works for my inspection. So far, however, this promise has not been kept. I admit that I’d like to be able to respond to her article, since, unfortunately, she quotes inaccurately and reads things from my works that aren’t there. This already happened once before, after the war, in spite of everything I did for her before the war.

            Thank you for sending me the review of Dr Gałecki’s work. Unfortunately, at that moment the situation was such that it looked as if there might not be a habilitation colloquium at all. First, because Morawski was out of town, the Department turned to Wallis, but he refused, pleading a lack of time. As it was impossible to ask Elzenberg[O2] , because the dean objected to having two retired professors as reviewers, I suggested, on Iza’s advice, turning to Ossowski, and I wrote him a polite letter asking him to undertake this function. Today I received a letter from him in which he refused, on the grounds that he hasn’t dealt with aesthetics in years and that he has too little time left in his life for writing things that, for him, are unnecessary (that’s more or less how it came out). I’m very worried, because poor Gałecki blames himself for everything that’s going wrong. He was unfortunate in having written a few positive things [O3] about me, even though his position is de facto different; but to praise Ingarden’s work is a deadly matter in Poland, which is nothing new, because people in Poland have long dreamed of wiping that name off the face of the earth, and in any case, of preventing even the appearance that he has some people in Poland who acknowledge his achievements. I don’t believe, however, that Gałecki should suffer because of those few words concerning my work. Anyway, I can tell him to delete them when it goes to press ‒ assuming it actually does, because I fear that our friends will prevent that too.

            I wrote another letter to Ossowski with a request for him to reverse his decision. Couldn’t you help me with this? Anyway, I’m afraid that Gałecki’s habilitation is going to go under now, since you’ll probably be leaving soon too, and so, as a result of the refusals of Wallis and Ossowski, the matter will either be delayed or fall through altogether. Wouldn’t that harm Gałecki, who really doesn’t deserve it?

            Cordial greetings, and please send a few lines. I’ll send off Csató’s article shortly.

                                                                       Your Roman

                                                                       Prof. R. Ingarden




[O1]Orgy: b.t., chyba b.r.
[O2]Oryg: Elsenberg
[O3]Oryg: duzerów. Słowo jest mi nieznane – może błąd w transkrypcji.  Chyba zamierzone znaczenie jest positive things.