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Ethnicity in Poland

Hans Chung 2 | 14  
15 Mar 2007 /  #1
I am a Taiwanese and I read some articles in Wikipedia and it says Polen is not 100% Polish people. There are also Ukrainian, Russian, Belarusian. Before World War II, Poland is a country which contained various ethnic people. But after World War II, the new country border made Poland move right to left and lost some area includ Lviv in Ukraina and some land in Belrussia. And lots of German people forced to leave their land such as German in East Prussia. And now there are still some Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian and German or even Lithuanian are still in Poland and they are also Polish citizen. Do they get along with local Poles? Do they still speak or write or read their own language like Russian, Ukrainian, German or Belarusian or Lithuanian? Any racial issue or conflict?
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161  
15 Mar 2007 /  #2
is not 100% Polish people.

There is no a country in the world, which is 100% native, Poland is about 97%, which make It one of the most (If not the most) ethnically homogenic country in Europe. Most of the rest are Ukrainians, Germans, Belorussians - in most cases these people are assimilated and know Polish much better than their "native" language. Only some of Germans are a bit different, because they live mostly in one area and German government gives them a lot of money on keeping their language and culture. There is few Lithuanians and they live mostly in one town near Polish-Lithuanian border, I don't exactly know how that happened, but probably someone forgot to send them on the other side of the border after WW2. Generally there are no problems. Now many foreigners are coming to Poland. The biggest "exotic" minority are Vietnamise - about 50 thousand of them live in Poland.
15 Mar 2007 /  #3
not that assimilated (integrated perhaps), even though they speak Polish better. The Ukrainian minority is very active in Poland:)
If you are not part of that nationality, you really don't know what is happening:)
Poland is more diverse that some people think.
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161  
15 Mar 2007 /  #4
The Ukrainian minority is very active in Poland

Where ? How ?
15 Mar 2007 /  #5
there is a Ukrainian Cultural Club on Wojska Polskiego, Ukrainian Church, a huge Ukrainian minority which has been active ever since they arrived in Szczecin in 1947. Some of them are professionals, doctors, have their own bussinesses. There is a constant influx of Ukrainians coming and settling down in Szczecin from Ukraine, there is a Ukrainian student and student dormitory club, dancing club, professional club, That's just Ukrainan Catholics, I have no knowledge of Ukrainian Orthodox people. I know that they have been very active. There is an primary and secondary Ukrainian school in Bialy Bor etc.
15 Mar 2007 /  #6

I understood that that lots of people in Szceczin were poles from Eastern Poland?
Also that there are Poles with Muslim roots (remants of ghengis khan's armies?) in eastern Poland, as well as old believers.
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161  
15 Mar 2007 /  #7

Sure, but for so many people I wouldn't say that as a minority they are very active. How many Poles even know that we have a large Ukrainian minority ?

Also that there are Poles with Muslim roots

Tatars. Just a few thousand of them.
15 Mar 2007 /  #8
where I originally come from _ Swidwin - byle woj, Koszalinskie, there are a lot of Ukrainians, but I guess since they are not visible minority, it's hard to notice, especially for somebody who has no interest in.

Things started to change in the 80's. There are Ukrainian churches in Kolobrzeg, Koszalin, Swidwin, Bialy Bor - with a really large population and all over Ziemie Odzyskane, since that's when Ukrainians were mostly relocted in 1947 during the Vistula relocation (Akcja Wisla- 1947).

Also, Ukrainian minority keeps a low profile because of the years of persecution. All our neighbours know who we are, we always got along with them and there was hardly any trouble, however, as I said before, the communist government had done some pretty nasty things trying to assimilate us. It didn't work in the end. We are there.
ArturSzastak 3 | 593  
15 Mar 2007 /  #9
Yeah. Polan dis definitely one of the most "original" ethnically. Not many countries are as good as us :)
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161  
16 Mar 2007 /  #10
We are there.

Cool :)
16 Mar 2007 /  #11
I speak and read Ukrainian.
As for getting along with Polish people, I have to say that my parents had more difficulties than I did, since they were resettled after the war and "planted" in a Polish speaking community. They had to deal with quite a lot of bashing over the years, language difficulties and my father was asked a number of times to co-operate with the secret police. He never did, but he was harrassed because of that and only now he is able to speak about it. I am sure that that impacted him a great deal and his quality of live in general.

As for the regular folks - it was OK. People just get along when politics is not invloved.

I personally lost some of my Polish friends once I started attenting Ukrainian church.

One of my history teachers used to ask me to show the Ukraine on the map, reagardless of the topic of the lecture, and since I was really young -I didn'y think much of it. Now, form the perspective I can only say that it's a sad thing for an adult to play such a game with a child.

Most of my friends knew that I was Ukrainian and dealt with the issue in various ways. Usually they simply ignored it or silently denied it.

One of the strongest Ukrainian non=political organizations was the Ukrainian church, which gathered the Ukrainian youth and we had meeting, dances and social gatherings and trips abroad to meet other Ukrainian minorities in Germany, Austria and Czekoslowakia. So I had the opportunity to travel at the time when the regular folks in Poland could not go abroad. It was a good learnign experiance for me.
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,161  
16 Mar 2007 /  #12
I started attenting Ukrainian church.

What kind of church is that ?
16 Mar 2007 /  #13
Ukrainian greek catholic church
FISZ 24 | 2,116  
16 Mar 2007 /  #14
Ukranian Orthodox?
16 Mar 2007 /  #15
nope -look above
16 Apr 2007 /  #16
Hi Miranda!

I'am Belgian and my English is not very good.
My mother-in-law was born Polish in 1924 in a little village near Cisna in the South-East of present day Poland. She was a Lemko and Greek Catholic. She was taken for forced labor in Germany during WWII. After the ware she came to Belgium and founded a family with a belgian man. She died in the year 2000.

Her language was Ruthenian. Isn't the language you speak? Why do you call it Ukrainian? These languages are they the same or almost the same?

If possible, you can answer me on
With kind regards.
Nathan 18 | 1,363  
15 Feb 2009 /  #17
Hi, Miranda. I think you shouldn't call them "friends". This is what is going on wrong with relations between the two countries. Parents kill any notion of respect towards your neighbor just on the basis of their historical hostilities. I pray that it will change. But the way I have lost a very dear to me person, because of where I came from.

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