The article is an attempted anthropological analysis of the Parkowa Educational-School Centre in the Cracow district of Podgórze. The authors aim to tell a multi-tiered story about an unusual place, deeply embedded in local history, and despite its past, still active. The present-day 'Parkowa' centre for juvenile delinquents is located in the villa of a Gestapo officer named Beckmann. The first part of the text deals with the specificity of a 'semi-open' educational centre. This feature consists of permitting the young person to decide whether he wishes to be a patient treated for social dysfunctions or an inmate forced to escape an oppressive punishment apparatus. The authors study the impact upon the young people of the untypical layout of the interiors, their aesthetic, the villa character of the building and its unique past. The authors go on to consider the villa's history, which still remains present in the awareness of the local residents, and involves both the second world war and the more distant past of 'Parkowa' and the Podgórze surrounding. 'Parkowa' is a magical place, where events and places from the past return in new embodiments and characters, where history intermingles with the present, and knowledge with legend. The centre is situated on a crossing of the coordinates of history and space, freedom and isolation, knowledge and legend, and its transcendental nature is supplemented by its location in a borderline part of the town - a former boundary of Cracow.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.