“Przekrój” – A lightly-put magazine that observes the world with a kind and playful eye
“Przekrój” (pronounced ‘p-SHEH-crooy’) is a magazine about society and culture that entertains and discusses subjects of universal value, standing aside from the haste and fierceness of everyday news.
What is our story?
We are the oldest magazine about society and culture in Poland, operating since 1945. “Przekrój”’s matchless literary style and lively visual charm were created thanks to continuous collaboration with the avant-garde of Polish intellectuals, writers, poets, artists and cartoonists. They crafted the unrivalled “Przekrój” style and unique quality of the magazine, valued by millions of readers. Back in the day, “Przekrój” was the birthplace of writers such as Wisława Szymborska, Sławomir Mrożek, Stanisław Lem and Czesław Miłosz.
During the period when Poland was behind the Iron Curtain, “Przekrój” provided a perspective of the world that was broader than Poles would otherwise have had in those years. The magazine accustomed readers not only in Poland, but also in other Eastern Bloc countries, with the latest trends in fashion, abstract art and contemporary Western literature. Because of that, the magazine was often described metaphorically as ‘a window to the world’.
Who are we today?
Revived in December 2016 as a quarterly, the new “Przekrój” brings back to life the tradition of the magazine from the years 1945–1968, when the magazine’s founder, the intellectual Marian Eile, was the editor-in-chief. Today, “Przekrój” exists to entertain, to encourage interest in the complex relation of the individual with society and culture, to raise important subjects in a thorough yet light manner, and to speak of the world with respect to the variety of its ‘truths’ and dimensions.
Nowadays, “Przekrój” can be found not only in Polish newsstands, but also online at przekroj.pl. The magazine’s entire archives from the years 1945–2000 are also available on the internet, free of charge, at https://przekroj.pl/en/archive/issues.
As of May 2019, the magazine also has an online English edition at przekroj.pl/en, bringing the international reader the best of “Przekrój”’s inimitable journalism, cutting across East and West, generations and cultures, philosophies of life and aesthetic senses.
What do we publish?
“Przekrój” publishes journalistic articles and reportages on society and culture, alongside pieces reflecting on a variety of arts – often focused around the vibrant Central European region, but also looking further afield. The magazine features interviews with philosophers, sociologists, and other interesting figures, like Noam Chomsky, Steven Pinker, Martha Nussbaum, Anthony Giddens, Daniel Dennett, Tanya Luhrmann, Michael Pollan, Eva Illouz, Jim Carrey, J. K. Simmons and John Oliver, among others.
“Przekrój” carries thought-provoking commentaries on big questions (such as global warming, wellbeing and conscious living), but also on lighter everyday issues. As a cultural beacon in Central Europe, the magazine is home to a range of fiction from neighbouring countries, including excerpts of larger works, and works in translation. It also publishes distinctive cartoons, and has a multimedia section offering videos, photo reportages, and audio versions of some articles.
Who do we publish?
With the never-decreasing ambition of bringing to its readers the best of what contemporary art and culture have to offer today, “Przekrój” publishes stories by well-known international and Polish writers. In December 2018, it published a previously-unknown short story by Stanisław Lem, “The Hunt”, discovered in the writer’s archives. It was the first European publication to release one of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s last unpublished stories, released in the US in 2017. The magazine has also showcased pieces from upcoming titles by Meir Shalev, Ottessa Moshfegh, Lucia Berlin, Mariana Enriquez and László Krasznahorkai, to name a few.
What is PRZEKRÓJ Foundation?
At the end of 2018, “Przekrój” became part of a larger entity – PRZEKRÓJ Foundation, whose broad nonprofit mission is to preserve the artistic and literary legacy of the magazine. The foundation continues the lifework of “Przekrój” magazine’s founders by reviving and promoting the heritage of the magazine into the cultural life of Poland and beyond in many areas, such as arts, literature and education. Thus, PRZEKRÓJ Foundation’s aim is to establish itself as a uniquely equipped cultural organization, cultivating and growing the value of “Przekrój”’s inimitable worldview as Poland’s cultural heritage. The Foundation inspires and creates cultural events in Poland and abroad.
"We want to participate in creating the sort of world in which we would like to live, keeping in mind that we all have the power to change it. The beauty of each human being manifests itself in her or his talent, which can be used to change the world for the better. What we take on enables us to be more broadly involved in social life, by bringing in such values as health, gratitude, development, enthusiasm, and love."
Tomek Niewiadomski, Founder of PRZEKRÓJ Foundation