Legal theorists and sociologists have recently used the term ‘constitutional imaginary’ as a set of ideas and beliefs that help to motivate and justify the practice of authority. They provide this authority with an overarching sense and purpose recognised by those governed as legitimate. Constitutional orders may be based on different reasons and goals. They may emphasise either negative liberty, the need to hammer out and enforce positive rights or solidarity and social dialogue. Influential individuals such as legal scholars and judges shape, reproduce and popularise constitutional imaginaries among society. European integration also brought to Central and Eastern Europe specific constitutional imaginaries. First and foremost, the adoption of constitutionalism as a legal, scientific and social discourse, as a way of reasoning and restraining public power, have expressed an imaginary and aspiration of belonging to the European legal culture.

The workshop organised by ‘IMAGINE – European Constitutional Imaginaries’ brings together a group of Polish constitutional law researchers interested in the sources, inspirations, socio-political context and evolution of European constitutional imaginaries in Poland, some of which might compete with each other. At the same time, Poland’s place in Europe was redefined, including those imaginaries that remained hidden or outside of the mainstream. A deeper reflection on the context and evolution of the Polish constitutionalism’s imaginary of its belonging to Europe (especially in the context of the current constitutional crisis) and the alternative and non-mainstream imaginaries will help draw valuable lessons for the European constitutional debate.




Panel 1: Process and Sources
10:00 – 10:45 Wojciech Zomerski (University of Wrocław), From a Façade to a Solid Foundation? The Evolution of the Polish Constitutionslim 1944-1989
10:45 – 11:30 Hanna Dębska & Tomasz Warczok (Pedagogical University of Cracow), The Multidimensional Legitimacy of the Constitutional Court in Poland
Panel 2: Foundations
11:45 – 12:30 Michał Ziółkowski (Leon Kozminski Academy in Warsaw), The Polish Constitutional Moment: Non-Existent, Untapped, Forgotten? Constitutional doctrine vs empirics
12:30 – 13:15 Aleksandra Kustra (University of Torun), European Integration – Ineffeble Aspiration or The Object of Concerns? On the Ambiguity of Europe in the Polish Constitutional Imaginary
Panel 3: Alternatives
14:15 – 15:00 Michał Krotoszyński (Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan), The Polish Constitutionalism’s Settlement with the Communist Period: Framework, Inspirations and Alternatives
15:00 – 15:45 Katarzyna Krzyżanowska (European University Institute), Rule of Law in Judicial Practice and as a Judicial Reflection
Panel 4: Prawo a Społeczeństwo
16:00 – 16:45 Paweł Skuczyński (University of Warsaw) & Karol Muszyński (KU Leuven), The Constitutional Absence of the Society and the Constitutional Crisis
16:45 – 17:30 Michał Krajewski (University of Copenhagen), The Socialist Quandary of Legal Constitutionalism in Poland

Discussant (to all panels): Anna Śledzińska-Simon (University of Wrocław)