RESEARCH AREAS AT THE INSTITUTE OF SLAVIC STUDIES, POLISH ACADEMY OF SCIENCES.
A GENERAL OVERVIEW

 

The Institute of Slavic Studies carries out interdisciplinary research into languages, literatures, history and ethnicities of the Slavic Area. The linguists, cultural studies scholars, cultural anthropologists and historians employed at the Institute have worked out a complementary Slavic studies approach which combines their disciplines' topics and research methods. Scholarly work at the ISS PAS is conducted within six research fields.

 

 


1. CULTURAL HERITAGE OF THE SLAVIC AREA. DIACHRONIC RESEARCH


 

 

Research projects within this field are undertaken with a view to study and describe the cultural and spiritual heritage of Slavic peoples. Diachronic research, documentation and editorial works result in lexicons, dictionaries, atlases, material as well as source and commentary compilations, bibliographies, and both collaborative and solo monographs – all of which are of fundamental importance to the humanities. The unique works carried out in lexicography feature the ongoing Proto-Slavic Dictionary (Słownik prasłowiański). Also published are multi-volume critical editions of sources for the study of Slavic histories and literatures. Interdisciplinary diachronic Slavic studies research tackles the questions of Slavic linguistic history, onomastics, historical dialectology, and the lexicon and language of particular writers. Russian and Ukrainian literary and cultural studies are also undertaken, focusing on literature, the arts, theatre and cultural anthropology.

 

 


2. NATIONAL AND REGIONAL IDENTITIES OF THE SLAVS (MYTHS, IDEAS, COLLECTIVE MEMORY)


 

 

Research within this field focuses on issues of nationality, including especially collective memory, ideas, myths and mythologems, symbolism, and linguistics aspects. Theoretical research concerns the identity of Slavic nations (including Poles) in the context of European integration and globalisation. Another topic of theoretical nationality studies is diachronic research on Poland's European relations and on ethnicities in the Slavic Area. An important sub-field are memory studies, featuring unique research on Belarusian historical memory. Other projects provide anthropological interpretations of modern culture as well numerous analyses of cultural identity in the Balkans.

 

 


3. MULTI-CULTURALISM; LINGUISTIC AND CULTURAL CONTACTS AND BORDERLANDS; LINGUISTIC, ETHNIC AND RELIGIOUS MINORITIES


 


Research in this field concentrates on national, ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities. Attention is also paid to issues concerning cultural borderlands, including language contacts. Empirical research in dialectology and socio-linguistics is undertaken, based predominantly on primary sources and thus requiring long-term fieldwork. Encompassed geographically are – in the west – the Polish-German as well as – in the east – the Polish-Lithuanian-Belarusian and Polish-Ukrainian borderlands, with a particular focus on the Polish minority in the former Soviet Union.

 

 


4. LINGUISTIC IMAGE OF THE WORLD (JOS, JĘZYKOWY OBRAZ ŚWIATA)


 

 

Basing on material derived from Slavic languages, projects within this research field comprise comparative studies on the linguistic image of the world on an national, all-Slavic, and – more broadly – European scale. Their object is both human perception of the world through the perspective defined by the individual's linguistic and cultural group and the human as a subject of their group's culture. Also of importance are the issues of both group / collective (especially national) identity and the identity of individuals partaking in more than one linguistic-cultural group. Affiliated with the Institute is the EUROJOS Seminar (Cultural and linguistic image of the world of Slavs and their neighbours in a comparative perspective), coordinating research by 56 scholars from places including Russia, Japan, Australia and a number of European countries.

 

 


5. SYNCHRONIC SLAVIC LINGUISTICS: CONTRASTIVE RESEARCH, SEMANTICS, COGNITIVISM, CORPUS LINGUISTICS 


 


This field comprises contrastive and cognitive linguistic research. The works are carried out within international, inter-disciplinary projects, which bring together linguists and programmers and result in multi-language dictionaries and corpora of Slavic languages. Also developed are Slavic corpus linguistics as well as Slavic and Slavic–non-Slavic contrastive research.

 

 


6. SLAVIC RESEARCH WORLDWIDE. SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION IN SLAVIC STUDIES


 


The projects within this field are undertaken with a view to allow scientific reflection on the changing tasks and development of Slavic studies, both in historical and contemporary perspectives. Other goals are: coordinating works on an international bibliography of Slavic linguistics, research into cutting edge methods of document retrieval for Slavic linguistics, and the creation of a database encompassing the scientific legacies of ISS PAS's employees. Continually developed are the on-line Slavic studies bibliography iSybislaw and the Slavic studies repository iReteslaw. Not to be undervalued is the contribution the works undertaken within this research field make to the worldwide popularisation of the achievements of Slavic studies.