The article focuses on the system of institutions shaping the image of history in a manner corresponding to the demands made by the political authorities and Marxist-Leninist ideology in Poland under the communist rule. The author indicated that the censors' office, which was to approve of each text prior to its publication, was merely a fragment of the system, whose other elements included the authors themselves (who did not write texts which in their opinion had no chances of being accepted by the censors) and the heads of publishing houses and scientific institutions. In 1953-1955 a special role was played within this system by the Institute of History at the Polish Academy of Sciences, whose task involved reviewing historical works written in Poland prior to their presentation to the censors. Z. Romek discusses the stand represented by the historians towards this system. On the one hand, they all declared the superiority of the Marxist method and their friendly attitude towards the Soviet Union (a condition for pursuing any sort of scientific activity), while on the other hand they recognised the analysis of sources, and not ideological and political requirements, as in the case of Soviet historiography, as the foundation for research. The discussed system came into being in about 1950, and at the turn of the 1960s communist security services stressed the modest attempts made by historians at contesting it. This contestation grew intensified from 1980 on, after the emergence of 'Solidarity' and chances for publishing outside the system. The author indicates the difficulties posed by attempts at an unambiguous moral assessment of the historians who due to methodological declarations and the admittance of topics accepted by the regime became embroiled in the creation of an image of the past postulated by the authorities; on the other hand, they defended the principle of the primacy of the scientific method over ideology to a degree not encountered in any other country of the Soviet bloc.
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