Marek Jan Chodakiewicz wins 2003 Józef Mackiewicz Award

Historian Marek Jan Chodakiewicz has been awarded the prestigious Józef Mackiewicz literary award for his exhaustive two-volume work (in Polish): Ejszyszki: Kulisy zajść, epilog stosunków polsko-żydowskich na kresach, 1944-45 (Ejszyszki: the background of events, and epilog of Polish-Jewish relations in the Eastern Borderlands, 1944-45). 

A comprehensive introduction (in English) to the topic can be downloaded here:

  EJSZYSZKI.DOC (Microsoft Word format, 383 KB)

The book can be ordered here: http://www.fronda.pl
(like the book, this web site is in Polish)


Ejszyszki is a small village in the south of the Wilno region, near the border with Belarus. In October 1944, the Resistance Home Army raided the house of the local NKVD commander who had been persecuting the Polish Resistance. This officer lived in the house of Yaffa Eliach's parents -- her mother and brother were killed in the crossfire. Yaffa Eliach, who was at one time associated with the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, has been presenting this incident to the American public as part of a deliberate action of the Home Army to exterminate Jews in the Eastern Borderlands.


Marek Jan Chodakiewicz was born in Warsaw in 1962. His father's family came from Wilno, and his grandparents were active in the Resistance Home Army during the German and Soviet occupations. It is therefore not surprising that this award is for a work that commemorates the actions of the Home Army in the Wilno region.

He was accepted into the English Department at the University of Warsaw, but chose instead to study in the United States, where he arrived in 1982. After the murder of Fr. Popieluszko, he decided not to return to his country. Today he is an American citizen. He graduated from San Mateo College in California, then from the San Francisco State University. He received a doctorate with distinction from Columbia University in New York City. His doctoral thesis was “Accommodation and Resistance: A Polish County [Krasnik] during the Second World War and its Aftermath, 1939-1947.” Subsequently, he became an assistant professor of history with the Kosciuszko Chair in Polish Studies at the Miller Center at the University of Virginia at Charlottesville (2001-2003). Currently, Dr. Chodakiewicz has just commenced work at the Institute of World Politics (http://www.iwp.edu) in Washington, DC, where he will teach and research on East Central Europe and Russia.

Mr. Chodakiewicz specializes in East Central European history in the 19th and 20th centuries, including the history of Poland, Habsburg and Romanov Empires, Jewish-Polish relations, environmental politics, intellectual conservative tradition, and extremist movements, including communists and fascists. His special area of interest is the Second World War and its aftermath. Other works include "After the Holocaust: Jewish-Polish Conflict in the Wake of World War II" (2003), and "Jews and Poles, 1919 - 1955: Coexistence, Holocaust, Communism." A work about Jedwabne will be published shortly.