Nina Morozova: We were discovering Russia for the Poles

05 September 2019

Nina Vasilyevna Morozova is an expert in Polish studies, one of those, who cannot be easily found. For many years – while in Poland and Russia – she was contributing into building a Russian-Polish polish dialogue in the field of culture. She served as Director of the Russian Center of Science and Culture in Warsaw. Currently, Nina Vasilyevna works at the Alexander Gorchakov Public Diplomacy Fund and serves as Deputy President of the Society for Cultural and Business Cooperation with Poland. In September Nina Vasilyevna is turning 80. Press Secretary of the Center for Polish-Russian Dialogue and Understanding Anna Chernova talked to Ms. Morozova about her work and people, who she was friends and colleagues with while traveling along her long “Polish road”.

- Nina Vasilyevna, everything in your house tells us about Poland. Paintings, photos. Did you live in Warsaw for many years?

- I can say that all my work has always been associated with Poland. I graduated from the Faculty of Philology at Moscow State University with concentration in Polish studies in 1969 and worked as a tour guide-interpreter at the Bureau of International Youth Tourism “Sputnik”. From 1971 to 1994 I was working at the Union of Soviet Friendship Societies as a secretary and then Secretary-General of the Society of Soviet-Polish Friendship.

In 1994 I began working as Head of the Cultural Unit and later Director at the Russian Center of Science and Culture in Warsaw. I was holding that position for 5 years – from 1999 to 2004. Those ten years in Warsaw were, perhaps, the most remarkable years in my life.

- What were the goals of the Russian Center of Science and Culture then?

- We were discovering the Russians for the Poles, introducing the Polish public to our people. We would invite Russian artists, musicians, cinematographers and scientists.

Until 1999 the working conditions were very favorable. We were located in a rented three-storied house on Foksal Street in the downtown area. The building had an exhibition hall, a cinema and concert hall for almost 400 people, a large library of Russian literature, a music lounge, a space for Russian language classes, offices for employees and a couple of guest rooms. Director of the Center then was very knowledgeable expert in Polish studies Stanislav Ivanovich Ksyenzhik under whose leadership I had worked earlier at the Union of Soviet Friendship Societies. During my business trip, the Center had a wonderful team of employees; courses of the Russian language were successfully organized at the Center and taught by teachers of the Institute of the Russian Language and Literature. Those courses were very popular among residents of Warsaw even though there were not free and they were contributing into financing of the events organized by the Center.

Read more in Russian here