PSR 4(192)2015

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Bounded Leadership Empirical Study of the Polish Elite

This paper presents the results of qualitative research conducted by the method of in-depth interviews with Polish leaders. A very diversified group of high-level and considerably successful leaders were selected and interviewed. The typology (profiles) of the leaders, their constraints and strength are revealed and discussed. The leaders give much importance to their struggle for autonomy and overcoming constraints. They are familiar with the different models of “optimal leadership.” Their profiles and sources of leadership strength are examined within the framework of the “bounded leadership theory.”
Keywords: leaders, leadership, qualitative research, typology, leadership constraints, leadership strength.

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Beyond Economic and Cultural Capital: Network Correlates of Consumption Tastes and Practices

This paper attempts to provide a picture of network effect on cultural participation by building on theoretical concepts of social capital and social networks as well as on original data collected by the author on 362 inhabitants of Wrocław. The central discussion of the study concerns the relative explanatory power of network variables (such as intensity of contacts with friends and acquaintances, or access to resources via social ties) in predicting the reported consumption tastes, practices or knowledge, net of structural factors. The findings support the hypothesis that more networked persons (particularly those having many non-kin contacts) are more likely to participate in a greater number of cultural activities and to be more “omnivorous” consumers. The article concludes with some possible directions of future research.
Keywords: social capital, networks, omnivorousness, cultural participation, taste, social ties.

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Getting a Job: Resources and Individual’s Chances on the Warsaw Labour Market

Individuals engaged in the labourmarket use a range of resources embedded in personal networks to improve their chances of getting a new job. Family, friends and acquaintances give access to various resources such as information, knowledge, trust, recommendation, money, etc. that may affect individual’s position on the labour market. Based on data collected with the Resource Generator tool among 9063 residents of Warsaw, we checked how embedded and mobilizable resources of family members, friends, acquaintances (social resources), as well as private resources owned by respondents (personal resources) affect individual’s perceived position on the Warsaw labour market. It was confirmed that chances of getting a job depend on the amount of embedded and mobilizable resources present in personal networks. However, relationship between embeddedness and usability of resources rely on the type of relation (family, friends, acquaintances) maintained by individual. We found that mobilizable resources are perceived as an asset on the labour market, while resources embedded in acquaintances network, that could be just accessed but not used, are considered a threat. At the same time, personal resources of respondents improve perceived chances of getting a new job inWarsaw. The observed dependencies between social and personal, embedded and mobilizable resources prompt a discussion on the shape and role of social capital in the urban labour market.
Keywords: resources, social capital, labour market, Resource Generator.

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Solidarity Lost? Low Pay Persistence During the Post-Communist Transition in Poland

This article analyses long-term changes in the persistence of low wages in Poland, given the variations in the general economic situation. All analyses are based on data from the Polish Panel Survey (POLPAN) conducted throughout the post-communist transition period, 1988–2013, on a representative sample of the Polish adult population. The study found that being in a low paid job raises the probability of experiencing the same situation five years later, even when controlling for the general economic context and the respondents’ demographic and economic characteristics. Upward mobility rates among initially low paid workers were significantly higher during periods of economic prosperity; however, even then low pay persistence remained substantial. The results also point to a secular growth in the persistence of poverty-level wages over the past two decades. Persistent low wages may bring about spaces of long-term poverty and social exclusion which cannot be overlooked by policy makers.
Keywords: Low paid employment, wage mobility, transition economies, panel data, Poland.

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How Do Poles Perceive Health? The Social Representation of Health and its Importance for the Social Order

In this article, the social representation of health shared by Poles is presented in the context of its function in society. The theory of social representations and its use in health research is introduced. The results of research are used to consider how perceptions of health shape a social order in which medicine is still a large institution of social control.
The above-mentioned research included 30 in-depth interviews and a nationwide survey of a representative sample. As a result, three dimensions of the social representation of health were identified: the ‘ability to function independently’, which involves mental well-being and the ability to fill social roles; ‘absence of disease’—lack of ailments, a feeling of zest and a lack of diagnosed illness; and the ‘biological reserves of the organism’—the resources for resisting disease. Analysis of the data has led to the conclusion that the first dimension serves to preserve identity and integration of the social group, the second contributes to maintaining medical social control, while the third motivates individuals to take steps to protect or improve their health. In addition, the last two dimensions serve the interests of groups profiting from medicalization.
Keywords: social representation, lay perception of health, Claudine Herzlich, medical social control, medicalization.

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The Process of Becoming an Active Disabled Person — the Psycho-Social Mechanisms of Sport’s Influence on Physically Disabled Individuals

The article raises the notions of changes that take place in the life of a physically handicapped person which are caused by their engagement in a sports activity. In the article I make an attempt to reconstruct the detailed mechanisms of sport’s influence on the life of a physically handicapped person, pointing to the manner in which physical activity supports the reconstruction of self-perception, a redefinition of their role, and the acquisition of a cognitive perspective of people meaningful to the individual. I refer to the subjective perspective of those researched, rendering their own point of view into the major subject of analysis. Hence, the research exploits qualitative data, collected during in-depth free interviews and observations conducted among the disabled practicing sports. Analysis and interpretation of the research material was performed in accordance with the procedures of grounded theory.
Keywords: sport, activity, disability, change, grounded theory.

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In the Streets. The (Non-)Everyday Life in the City of Łodź during the Great War

In this essay, I demonstrate how extraordinary was, in fact, the ordinary life in Łódź from the autumn of 1914 to the autumn of 1918, as illustrated by the texts in Nowy Kurjer Łódzki and Nowa Gazeta Łódzka, the two Polish-language daily newspapers issued in the city. I focus on the actions which, once considered everyday, i.e. ordinary and even routine, entered into the field of extraordinariness and created new norms and new routines, or even took control, as a result. I am interested in only those practices and events which unfold in the city space, outside the home and family, i.e. in the areas associated with general accessibility to all the residents.
Keywords: everydayness, non-everydayness, Łódź, the Great War.

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Kaliningrad as a Bazaar and Cross-border Trade — the Results of 2012 Research

The City of Kaliningrad is an example of a “market area,” thanks to which we discover the methods of cross-border trades that developed before and after the implementation of a local border traffic agreement between Poland and Russia. It applies not only to the Central Market in Kaliningrad but also to the whole urban space that serves in everyday life as a large marketplace away from the officially designated market areas. The article deals with the urban space of Kaliningrad and its most important markets: The Central Market, The Flea Market, the market for agricultural and other forms of trade that can be observed in public space. We can put an equals sign between Kaliningrad and bazaar, City of Kaliningrad and its space is a grand bazaar.
Keywords: Kaliningrad, city, town, bazaar, market, trade.

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Polish Sociological Review – digitalization of publications and monographs in order to ensure and maintain an open access through the Internet is financed by the decision no. 573/P-Dun/2017 allocated by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education for the dissemination of knowledge.

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