Tomorrow on to Madagascar!: Polish Colonial Plans in the Indian Ocean

Keywords: Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Jewish emigration, Madagascar, Polish-French talks, Maritime and Colonial League (MCL) (Polish: Liga Morska i Kolonialna), Polish press

Abstract

The paper is devoted to the analysis of the Polish-French negotiations around the problem of settling the island of Madagascar by «Jewish element». Attention is focused on several issues: the problem of Jewish emigration from the Polish lands, the place of Madagascar in the colonial plans of the Polish government and the reaction of Polish society on the possibility of creating colonies on the African island. In the context of the fact that Madagascar was a French colony, the process of negotiations between the French and Polish governments, based on archival records of the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, takes a sazeable place in the paper.

At this stage of the development of Ukrainian science, the Polish-French talks on the colonization of Madagascar have not been studied at all. Therefore, the main goal of the research is to describe the process of negotiations between France and Poland on the possible resettlement of Polish citizens of Jewish origin to Madagascar, a description of practical attempts to found Polish settlements on the island, to retrace the reaction of Polish society on this problem.

Among the Polish researchers it is necessary to mention Zbigniew Bujkiewicz and Mykhailo Yarnetsky, who devoted their research works to the projects of Polish colonization of Madagascar. Marek Arpad Kovalski, gave a fragmentary overview of the issue, generally describing Polish-French negotiations. As for Ukrainian researchers, the work of Stepan Kacharaba, devoted to the emigration of Jews from Eastern Halychyna (Galicia) is worth analyzing. Though the problem of Madagascar Project is not paid attention in this research, the work is important because it provides the general statistics of Jewish population of Poland.

The important place among the sources on this issue take the memoirs of Arkady Fedler and Mecislav Lepetskyi, who were on the island with special missions. Also, an informative source is the printed media of various political directions («Gazeta Polska», «Rankovyy kuryer», «Varshavskyy narodnyy dennyk»), Jewish newspapers («Nash ohlyad» and «Khvilya») and the press of the Maritime and Colonial League («More», «Morski ta kolonialni spravy», «More ta Koloniyi»).

Published
23.09.2018
How to Cite
PetrychakI. (2018). Tomorrow on to Madagascar!: Polish Colonial Plans in the Indian Ocean. Eminak: Scientific Quarterly Journal, 1(3 (23), 95-102. Retrieved from https://eminak.net.ua/index.php/eminak/article/view/166
Section
World History and International Relations