Engagement, Community, Activity, and Helpfulness as Predictors of Social Solidarity during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Poland

  • Dorota Gierszewski, PhD, DSc Jagiellonian University Cracow, Institute of Pedagogy
  • Julia Kluzowicz, PhD Jagiellonian University Cracow, Institute of Pedagogy
  • Sylwia Opozda-Suder, PhD Jagiellonian University Cracow, Institute of Pedagogy


In light of the COVID-19 epidemic, this paper aimed to scientifically validate Randall Collins' eclectic interaction ritual theory. It was anticipated that a crisis scenario would result in the discharge of emotional energy, which would be conveyed through contacts in the form of participation, community, action for the benefit of others, and helpfulness. Accordingly, it was hypothesized that this energy influences the perception of social cohesion, but its potency may be contingent on pandemic waves. Based on data acquired in Poland during the first and third pandemic waves, April-May 2020 (T1) and April 2021 (T2), respectively, the accepted analytic framework was developed. Through social networking sites, the sample was collected in a non-random fashion. It included 116 respondents between the ages of 17 and 77 (M = 40.10, SD = 15.05) from various parts of the country. Principal analyses were performed using multiple linear regression with the MLR (Robust Maximum Likelihood) estimator. As a result of our analyses, we discovered, firstly, that the sense of solidarity in a world destabilized by the COVID-19 pandemic was influenced by various predictors of varying strengths, depending on the wave of the pandemic, and, secondly, that the civic sector in Poland is crucial for the formation of civic attitudes involving independent management in social life.

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