It is said that every country has its own genus loci or “spirit of place.” Poland’s distinct character can be found in the tens of thousands of roadside chapels, crosses and shrines that dot both its cities and countryside. A thousand years of Christianity, and the Polish Catholic tradition in particular, have left their mark on the country’s landscape. It is impossible not to notice the religious statues and little chapels that seem to be everywhere.
The PGSCTNE again welcomes Polish-American author Sophie Hodorowicz Knab who will explore the origins and purposes of Polish roadside shrines, examining the different types of shrines and the significance of the various religious figures represented in them to the people of Poland. We will learn about the artists and sculptors who created the shrines, the role these local shrines played in the annual holidays, the customs and traditions of the community, and their role in everyday life as well as death.
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