Strange world of Witkacy

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Rousing from his drug-induced slumber, 54-year-old Witkacy found himself slumped against a tree, deep in a forest. Suicide, it seemed, was not easy.
 
 
To the east, Russian tanks were entering Poland, his homeland, intent on countering the Nazi invasion. Whoever triumphed, a totalitarian regime would ensue.
 
 
Unable to accept any loss of personal freedom Witkacy, the man who in death would ultimately be recognised as a cultural hero of Poland, produced a razor from his pocket and, slitting each wrist, kept his last promise to himself: "I won't go on living as less than myself."
 
 
It was September 18, 1939 - the Second World War had begun.
 
 
Nearly five decades later the Polish government finally acknowledged their pioneer of the avant garde when, in 1988, his remains were brought back to his hometown Zakopane and honoured with a state ceremony . . . but more of that later.
 
 
 
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Source: Scotsman
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