This is the first of four volumes providing an introduction to the history of Poland from 1914 to the present day. It describes and analyses political developments in Poland within a European context, beginning with the emergence of an independent Polish state after the First World War. Alongside internal Polish politics, it considers the new state’s international relations, including the formation of Poland’s borders, the Polish–Soviet War and, ultimately, the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and September Campaign. It will also provide an overview of the available primary sources (many of which can be found online) and further reading. Subsequent volumes will consider Poland’s experiences of war and occupation (1939-45), Poland under Communism (1945-89), and modern Polish history (1989-present).