Anna Lanota

This is my photo taken after the war. In 1948 the magazine 'Przyjaciolka' was launched [a women's weekly, still on the press market] and I was given the position of editor-in-chief.

In 1949 ‘Przyjaciolka’ had a circulation of two million, and I got a medal for that then. My photograph was printed in some newspaper among others with the caption 'The foremost women in our country.' It is exactly this photo.

In ‘Przyjaciolka’ I earned good money. As the editorial office was a long way from my apartment, on Wiejska Street, I approached the publisher and asked them to exchange my apartment in Bielany for one closer to the office. I was given one, a little smaller, and in fact I still have it today.

In 1959 I was thrown out of ‘Przyjaciolka.’ They sent a woman from the Central Committee [of the PZPR] to carry out an inspection, and I threw her out.

I was summoned to the Committee and they told me that it was unheard of for their people to be thrown out. Starewicz, the Committee's main man for the press, said that it was him or me, because he couldn't tolerate his employees being treated like that.

My superiors were a little worried that circulation would drop, and that was money, so they didn't all vote against me. But they threw me out.

After 'Przyjaciolka' I was out of work for a whole year. I was offered the paper of the ZBOWiD [Union of Fighters for Freedom and Democracy, an organization of veterans that existed in the period 1949-1990], but I didn't want to work there.

I went to Professor Zebrowska and she gave me a job at Warsaw University. I taught a child psychology class and helped her to gather materials for her work, and conducted research in kindergartens. At the same time I worked in a psychology clinic.

After a year's break I once again started work for a magazine, this time for 'Wiedza i Zycie' [Knowledge and Life, a popular science monthly] as the assistant editor-in-chief.

The chief was a good friend of mine from back before the war. I worked there until I retired, i.e. until 1975. I carried on working in the clinic even longer, until I was 80.