Tuesday, 5 June 2007

Odd bedfellows

In the wacky Tweedledum and Tweedledee world of post-modern Poland, it seems only natural that Tinky Winky and Goethe should find themselves sharing the same rather incommodious bed of censorship. The purple Teletubby and the great German poet apparently both run the risk of being banned from Polish schools. Along with Kafka, Dostoevsky, Gombrowicz and, er, Gustav Herling-Grudzinski.

We all know about Tinky Winky's suspiciously gay skin colour and handbag, but Goethe? According to Miroslaw Orzechowski, leading member of the deputy prime minister's Family League and convinced creationist, he's a dangerous libertine. How so? Well, Faust has sex before marriage, while young Werther tries to get his leg over a married woman. The door's over there, Johann Wolfgang, you filthy beast. And the others? Kafka? A nihilist. Dostoevsky? Apologist for a criminal - just read Crime and Punishment. (No, on second thoughts, don't. You might do something naughty.) Gombrowicz? Gay.
(Gay?) Gustav Herling-Grudzinski? Nasty stuff about gulags (as though you didn't know).

But all is not lost. Prime minister Kaczynski (the straight one, or maybe not - I just can't tell them apart) appears to be becoming aware of the ridiculous figure his gang of drooling bigots is cutting outside the Polish borders, and may put his stocky little foot down. This probably won't worry
Orzechowski (the very name is music), who is also working on excluding all gays from state employment. Good thing there's still a division between church and state, Miroslaw!

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