Mina Boas on holiday

Mina Boas on holiday

This is my university friend Mina Boas. She was from Zgierz. We studied psychology together in Warsaw.

Mina had split up with a painter at the time and was suffering terribly. She told me about it, and that was how we became friends. Later on, during the war, I met her in Lvov.

We used to go to psychology lectures by the lecturer (later professor) Tomaszewski. Mina was killed in Lvov when the Germans came. She gave me this photograph as a memento, and by a miracle it survived the war. I'd like something to remain of her.

I had an awful lot of friends at university. They were mostly young left-wingers. Leftism was a world view; I define it very broadly. For instance there was a girl among us who came from a very Catholic home, but not an Endek one.

In any case they weren't such crass young people as in medicine or law. We were involved with the Communist youth organization Zycie, which operated at the university. We knew there was great poverty in Poland.

We believed the Soviet Union to be just, that they governed well there, that Marx and Lenin were right. We read Marxist books, such as Lenin's 'What Is To Be Done?', but also ones by the anarchist Kropotkin.

We carried out enlightening work. I used to meet workers from the communist group that met on Wisniowa Street.

I lived with various friends, usually ones that I met at university. Most of the students in the psychology department were women.

Once I lived on Marszalkowska Street with a painter, Natalia, and students from the Academy of Fine Arts used to come to see her.

At that time the boys and girls that studied there were the most sociable, fun, intelligent that you can imagine. Once or twice a large group of us went to Kazimierz on the Vistula with Prof. Pruszkowski.

We used to organize get-togethers, talks, sometimes we would dance, but they weren't noisy parties, definitely without any alcoholic drinks.

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