Autor Wątek: Lem´s ancestry  (Przeczytany 61524 razy)

Borwa

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #15 dnia: Kwiecień 11, 2006, 12:33:31 am »
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As a young man Lem planned to become a doctor himself, enrolling at the Lvov Medical Institute.


Hmm, that's not quite accurate. In his conversation with Tomasz Fiałkowski Lem mentioned that he has intended to study on a university of technology but he couldn't due to his father's heritage. So with father's help he enrolled at the medical institute (alternatively he could have joined The Red Army so the choice was quite obvious).

Hope this helps.
Regards
« Ostatnia zmiana: Kwiecień 11, 2006, 12:33:51 am wysłana przez Borwa »

Terminus

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #16 dnia: Kwiecień 11, 2006, 03:35:51 am »
Besides, it was already in Krakow, wasn't it?
(I'm a bit messed up with it...)

Ritch

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #17 dnia: Kwiecień 11, 2006, 07:29:53 pm »
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but he couldn't due to his father's heritage


I dont understand this... Do you mean his father's own profession? (i.e. doctor)

Borwa

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #18 dnia: Kwiecień 11, 2006, 10:49:44 pm »
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I dont understand this... Do you mean his father's own profession? (i.e. doctor)


Hmm, maybe "heritage" wasn't the right word here.
It has happened shortly after the Soviet forces took over the city and because Lem's father was from the upper class such problem occured.

Cytuj
Besides, it was already in Krakow, wasn't it?
(I'm a bit messed up with it...)


In Krakow he has continued his studdies but he started them in Lwow.

Regards

daffodil2006

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #19 dnia: Kwiecień 20, 2006, 04:59:28 pm »
You should read his novel 'High castle'. In Russian it is "Âűńîęčé çŕěîę".

Kagan

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Lem´s Jewish ancestry is no secret
« Odpowiedź #20 dnia: Maj 03, 2006, 11:18:51 am »
In few words: Lem's ancestry was Polish-Jewish. His grandfather was an officer of Austro-Hungarian army, his father a rich medical practitioner in then Polish Lwow (today Lviv in Western Ukraine). Thanks to his Jewish origin, Lem got an enthusiastic review in "New York Times Book Review", a review (by a fellow Jew - Mr.  Solotaroff) that opened for him the American market, the largerst market for SF literature and made Lem one of the richest persons in (then) "communist" Poland.
Please also note, that when the Soviets entered Lwow, young Staszek Lem was alowed to study medicine, as Jews were then very strong in the Soviet Union. But when Lwow was occupied by Nazi Germany, Staszek Lem had to work as a car mechanic and welder (his family was not orthodox-Jewish, so they could bribe the German authorites and get "arian" ('aryjskie') papers, so S. Lem was even able to visit his friends in Lwow ghetto (see, for example, "High Castle"). It is very sad, that later Lem wrote so many bad things about communist authorities, the same authorities that allowed him to study (for free) medicine: first in Soviet Lwow, than in "communist" Polish Cracow... :(
lech.keller@gmail.com

Terminus

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #21 dnia: Maj 03, 2006, 02:04:03 pm »
Lech, your ironic and sarcastic attitude is widely known. Yet you keep proving to us that there's still much more left...

Nevertheless, you knowledge about Lem spreads even wider, so I guess I'll get it over...  So thanks for the info!
« Ostatnia zmiana: Maj 03, 2006, 02:04:20 pm wysłana przez Terminus »

Kagan

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #22 dnia: Maj 03, 2006, 06:10:15 pm »
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Lech, your ironic and sarcastic attitude is widely known. Yet you keep proving to us that there's still much more left...
Nevertheless, you knowledge about Lem spreads even wider, so I guess I'll get it over...  So thanks for the info!

OK! Please do not read my post above as a critique of Lem. All I wanted to say that Lem had a mixed ancestry. I also had one German (Bavarian) grandparent, one who was ascendant of Polish Tatars, one most likely Polish-Slavic origin (but who knows) and one, most likely German-Jewish...
I see nothing wrong in saying that S. Lem's ancestry was Polish-Jewish. It was also not a reason to shame that Lem's grandfather was an officer of Austro-Hungarian army, and his father was a (relatively) rich medical practitioner in (then) Polish city of Lwow (today Lviv in Western Ukraine). And it is a fact that (mostly) thanks to his Jewish origin, Lem got a very enthusiastic review in "New York Times Book Review", a review (by a fellow Jew - Mr.  Solotaroff) that opened for him the American market, the largerst market for SF literature and made Lem one of the richest persons in (then) "communist" Poland. Lem was rich, but one of few 20th century Poles, who got their riches honestly. It is again not a single reason to hide it or to be ashamed of...
Please also note, that when the Soviets entered Lwow, young Staszek Lem was alowed to study medicine (FOR FREE! - a dream of today's Americans), as Jews were then very strong in the Soviet Union (purges of Jews in the USSR started much later, when old Stalin became paranoid). But when Lwow was occupied by Nazi Germany, Staszek Lem had to work as a car mechanic and welder (his family was not orthodox-Jewish, so they could bribe the German authorites and get "arian" ('aryjskie') papers, so S. Lem was even able to visit his friends in Lwow ghetto (see, for example, "High Castle"). Again, that only proves his high inteligence and  cleverness...
It is also very sad, that later Lem wrote so many bad things about communist authorities, the same authorities that allowed him to study (for free) medicine: first in Soviet Lwow, than in "communist" Polish Cracow... It is also the truth. It is also the truth that Lem did not like to serve in the Polish army as a doctor. It was not really very patriotic... I think you know how much it costs (and it used to) to train a doctor! And then such a person "dicovers" that medicine is not hois or her cup of tea...
Cheers! :)

Terminus

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #23 dnia: Maj 03, 2006, 09:35:21 pm »
Well, I've read that Lem was allowed to study medicine, because his father's connections helped him. But noone ever mentioned that the latter used his Jewish connections ::)

As for America, are you sure Lem was that much popular there?

Kagan

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #24 dnia: Maj 04, 2006, 11:07:32 am »
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Well, I've read that Lem was allowed to study medicine, because his father's connections helped him. But noone ever mentioned that the latter used his Jewish connections ::)

As for America, are you sure Lem was that much popular there?


1. As a Polish Jew young S. Lem could be not admitted to study engineering in Soviet Union of early 1940s. Engineering was then a very prestigious and strategic profession in USSR and government wanted (mostly for security reasons) more ethnic Russians (or at least persons of Slavic origin) to study engineering rather than Jews, that were (quite rightly, as it turned later, especially in 1968) not trusted, as their allegiance was not to communism and Russia (SU), but to zionizm and Israel...
But it could be also because S. Lem failed entry examination in mathematics. His father, as a physician, could help Staszek to get admition to study medicine, where entry examinations were not in mathematics (most likely in biology, chemistry and physics).
2. Lem was never as popular in the US as Asimov or Clarke. But his books sold well in in America and had many editions there. Please note that the US is and was the LARGEST market for SF books. So even, say, 1%-2% share of this marker is net worth (in USD, for example), than, say, 10% or even 20% share of Czech, Slovak, Hungarian and even French market.

Terminus

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #25 dnia: Maj 04, 2006, 12:37:43 pm »
You say he failed maths? Ha! That's interesting.

As for the american market - ok, I get it.

Kagan

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #26 dnia: Maj 04, 2006, 02:57:24 pm »
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Hmm, that's not quite accurate. In his conversation with Tomasz Fiałkowski Lem mentioned that he has intended to study on a university of technology but he couldn't due to his father's heritage. So with father's help he enrolled at the medical institute (alternatively he could have joined The Red Army so the choice was quite obvious).

Hope this helps.
Regards


Most likely Lem either forgot the reasons he could not study ingeneering, or tried to blame his failure on the "Reds". As Soviets were nor popular in Poland, such a lie was esily bought by the majority of  Poles. But as I do not follow this anti-Soviet and anti-Russian hysteria, so am not so easy fooled, and ask for hard evidence. Until I see some documents explaining why young Staszek Lem was not admitted to study engineering in Lwow (Lviv, Lvov), I insist that my hypotheis (failed mathematics) is as well likely as Mr. S. Lem's claim that he was discriminated because of his raciall or social origin...

Kagan

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #27 dnia: Maj 04, 2006, 03:04:26 pm »
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You say he failed maths? Ha! That's interesting.

As for the american market - ok, I get it.


1. All I say is that it was most likely that he has failed mathematics. It is based on statistical evidence and my experience as a university lecturer: the most likely subjects students fail are:
- mathematics,
- statistics and
- econometrics.
and similar (calculus, theory of probability, time series, econometric modelling etc.).
I use examples from my discipline, but know well that it is very similar at universities of technology....
2. In English one writes "American", "Polish", "Jewish" etc. Just for the record and in order to improve standard of English here...

Metalist

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #28 dnia: Maj 05, 2006, 04:36:44 am »
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But it could be also because S. Lem failed entry examination in mathematics. His father, as a physician, could help Staszek to get admition to study medicine, where entry examinations were not in mathematics (most likely in biology, chemistry and physics).

Kagan, what are your sources for this information? You speak of these things and form hypothesis on pretty specific allogations, yet all we have to go by, for the most part, is your word.
Cytuj
It is also very sad, that later Lem wrote so many bad things about communist authorities, the same authorities that allowed him to study (for free) medicine: first in Soviet Lwow, than in "communist" Polish Cracow... It is also the truth. It is also the truth that Lem did not like to serve in the Polish army as a doctor. It was not really very patriotic... I think you know how much it costs (and it used to) to train a doctor! And then such a person "dicovers" that medicine is not hois or her cup of tea...

Kagan, in the SU all education was "free" and we all know where that "Free" was gotten from. So to say that someone is at fault for not pursuing a doctor's career after being trained for it by the SU can only work if you are making an argument in defense of the SU. And although the SU does not "scare" you, to the most of us it is not going to strike a soft spot with anyone if your argument is "how terrible and unpatriotic Lem is by taking advantage of the free Soviet education system and then just spitting at his fellow comrades by not pursuing what he was studying"
Cytuj
Thanks to his Jewish origin, Lem got an enthusiastic review in "New York Times Book Review", a review (by a fellow Jew - Mr.  Solotaroff) that opened for him the American market, the largerst market for SF literature and made Lem one of the richest persons in (then) "communist" Poland.

To speculate that the reason he got a good review in the new york times is that he is of a Jewish heritage is rather unfounded.

Cytuj
Engineering was then a very prestigious and strategic profession in USSR and government wanted (mostly for security reasons) more ethnic Russians (or at least persons of Slavic origin) to study engineering rather than Jews,


The first part of your statement is sort of true, SU wanted people who were more Russian, not non-Jewish. Jews were descriminated against, but on a "Case by case" basis in this situatuion.

Cytuj
...Jews, that were (quite rightly, as it turned later, especially in 196 not trusted, as their allegiance was not to communism and Russia (SU), but to zionizm and Israel...

Where do you get this? My father's side of the family were all Jewish, mechanical and electronic engineers in the SU. Their allegiance was to neither Israel or SU or even zionizm, it was to their family. I'm sure that it was not your intention to do so, yet I can't help that  "...quite rightly, as it turned later, especially in 196 not trusted, as their allegiance was not to communism and Russia (SU), but to zionizm and Israel..." sounds to me like a rather antisemitic statement.
« Ostatnia zmiana: Maj 05, 2006, 06:54:49 am wysłana przez Metalist »

Metalist

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Re: Lem´s ancestry
« Odpowiedź #29 dnia: Maj 05, 2006, 07:09:22 am »
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Most likely Lem either forgot the reasons he could not study ingeneering, or tried to blame his failure on the "Reds". As Soviets were nor popular in Poland, such a lie was esily bought by the majority of  Poles. But as I do not follow this anti-Soviet and anti-Russian hysteria, so am not so easy fooled, and ask for hard evidence. Until I see some documents explaining why young Staszek Lem was not admitted to study engineering in Lwow (Lviv, Lvov), I insist that my hypotheis (failed mathematics) is as well likely as Mr. S. Lem's claim that he was discriminated because of his raciall or social origin...

So, what are you saying? That the Reds were popular in Poland? Which "hysteria" are you referring to? Are you saying that the Polish dislike of the Soviets was a lie (non-existant) or unjustified? Or that Lem, "made-up" the "Soviet Hysteria"? You ask for hard evidence of Lem's academic records? What hard evidence do you have to form your "hypothesis"? I'm not sure about the Polish or Croatian justice system, but in an American court arguments such as yours would be concidered "heresay".