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Polish Thoughts on Britain and the British


pubgenius  
12 Feb 2007 /  #1
Hello to eveyone on this forum. I see loads of topics have been covered but wanted to know what everyone thought about this:

A project is being started by a British organisation to get the thoughts of Polish people about their experiences in Britain and how they feel they are treated by the British people.

General opinion seems to be that the migration of Poles to the UK has been positive for both countries. What the study wants to understand is whether the increased knowledge of and interaction with British society will lead to Polish people having a changed view of the British (whether it is more positive or negative) and have your stereotypes been confirmed. Is Britain conservative, dull, unwelcoming and traditional or exciting, multicultural, modern and dynamic? If you decide to go back to Poland, do you think you will take back any British values with you?

I'd be really interested in getting everyones opinions about this. Be as negative or as kind as possible, all i want to hear is the truth.

Thanks so much
Maati 1 | 178  
12 Feb 2007 /  #2
Hi,

I can only say sth form the teacher of Polish as a second language in Warsaw.
All of my British students are ambitious, hard-working and smart.
My favourite students are from Scotland.
Maybe I was just lucky, but they were great so far.
Open-minded, with a great sense of humour, not thinking stereotypicaly about Poles.
Willing to mix with Polish folks here in Warsaw.
English students are more reserved. I don't know why (?)
Irish students are funny and very ambitious as well.

I can only say sth form the teacher of Polish as a second language in Warsaw.

from the perspective of the teacher etc.- you know what i mean...
Guest  
12 Feb 2007 /  #3
My thoughts are positive. After being in Britain I dont think that english are phlegmatic, drink tee at 5 pm and so.... But for me British too much underline that their are english, welsch, irish and so... If they sent foodball team to World Cup it is english team, why not british? Might be I am not able to understand their thoughts like they cannot understand ours.
Amathyst 19 | 2,702  
12 Feb 2007 /  #4
english team

They are English since, Ireland, Scotland and Wales would send a team, the United Kindom is made up of England Ireland Scotland and Wales, we all have our own identities yet as a collective we are British - Great Britain, United Kingdom etc. - I hope this helps and Im glad that you dont think we drink tea at 5pm since we are in the pub :)
BubbaWoo 33 | 3,510  
12 Feb 2007 /  #5
Might be I am not able to understand their thoughts like they cannot understand ours.

thats an interesting observation... i find that there are fundamental differences between me and my polish friends in the way we think... this can be on a very superficial level... and also much deeper... i would be interested to hear your thoughts as a pole in the uk...
OP pubgenius  
12 Feb 2007 /  #6
thanks very much maati, that's a great starting point and excellent to get the perspective of thoughts on the British in Poland.
Lots of people think that people from abroad are not able to make distinctions between English, Welsh, Scottish etc but it is very interesting that this is what you immediately notice. do you think most British people have a set idea of Poles that they find difficult to overcome? I've always thought that Polish people would have much more detailed ideas about Britain than perhaps we would of Poland. What are the Polish stereotypes of British people. I have always wondered if people abroad have different ideas about British people in the UK and the British when on holiday? I have always found that Spanish, Greek thoughts about the British are often negative because of people's behaviour in their countries (get drunk, fight etc)

Do you have friends who have moved to Britain and do you think they would say the same sort of things to you?

My thoughts are positive. After being in Britain I dont think that english are phlegmatic, drink tee at 5 pm and so

If being in Britain has taught you about what the British are not - i.e. eating cucumber sandwiches then do you have an idea what being British now is? I think what you mention is really interesting as all the recent reports in Britain are saying that young people in Britain see themselves as English, Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland because they don't know what British means!

It is something that politicians seem to be very worried about. That is why I am interested in Polish thoughts, as your views may help draw the picture for us a bit better.
Guest  
12 Feb 2007 /  #7
When I was in Britain they were suprised when I told their that Poland is also divided, we have Kaszuby, Mazury, ślązk and so on.... and all of them say that their are polish, not Mazovian, Silesian and so on... Poland is more solid. And maybe because they were united not taken by force. So we are different.
BubbaWoo 33 | 3,510  
12 Feb 2007 /  #8
good point but the uk is divided in different ways... england, scotland, wales are all seperate countries which are then sub-divided like the example you have given for poland... england has many counties for example...
Guest  
12 Feb 2007 /  #9
yes!! It is complicated!!
iwona 12 | 542  
12 Feb 2007 /  #10
I think that Poland is much less divided than Uk.

I also noticed it that English, Welsh, Scottish.....are a bit like 3 different nations.

My experience in Uk is positive , people are in general friendly but I agree with Maati that English seem to be more reserved that Scottish or Irish. I don't know why maybe it is culture thing.

There are some differences in in our cultures referring to : religion....family relation ...even our attitude to death is different.
Amathyst 19 | 2,702  
12 Feb 2007 /  #11
I also noticed it that English, Welsh, Scottish.....are a bit like 3 different nations.

We are three different nationalities English, Welsh and Scottish, yes we all have British Passports but we are in no way alike, three separate countries on one Island

Hence the division, in Wales they speak Welsh and in Scottland well they have their own language :) Scottland have their own Parliament separate from the English one.

We also have regions

Lancashire
Yorkshire
North East
Cumbria
ect..
Guest  
12 Feb 2007 /  #12
What about the Cornish, Kernow has it's own language as well
Wroclaw 44 | 5,387  
12 Feb 2007 /  #13
If you are going to talk about language. Think about this. Northumberland existed as a kingdom before England. What is thought by many to be a dialect is in fact a language. Original English. The first word in the first dictionary is Keel, a Geordie word for boat. You can all check these facts if you so wish. The English should be speaking Geordie.

More strange but true from Wroclaw.
OP pubgenius  
12 Feb 2007 /  #14
i agree to an extent but only about 20% of the Welsh are actually able to speak it as a language and turnout for referndums on devolution was extremely low.

I wonder how much the points of difference between the countries are mainly saved for big sporting occasions to wind each other up. I think that we are very much alike and i wouldn't be able to mention many things that are significantly different culturally between us.

iwona, how are our attitudes to death different and is it linked to religious beliefs?

it seems people have multiple identities that comfortably co-exist. Are POles for example beginning to see themselves as Polish-European?
Grzegorz_ 51 | 6,163  
12 Feb 2007 /  #15
Tell one of your tribes to stop wearing femel clothes and everything should be OK.
Amathyst 19 | 2,702  
12 Feb 2007 /  #16
No idea what you are talking about, maybe you mean tartan

The point I made about the difference countries - is we are not divided as a nation the simple fact is we are three countries living on one island and we do have our differences

As follows:-

Difference languages / dioletcs

Difference attitutes

Difference in culture - food etc.

And yes the sport thing is probably correct, but also Scottish and Welsh people want to keep their own identities - they are proud of who they are and are mighty offended if called English....trust I know...

Are POles for example beginning to see themselves as Polish-European?

Polish are European since they come from Europe, so I dont really understand what you mean by that....

What about the Cornish, Kernow has it's own language as well

England is a strange place with many difference diolects...

As Mr W pointed out the Geordie was one of the first diolects...
Wroclaw 44 | 5,387  
12 Feb 2007 /  #17
Tell one of your tribes to stop wearing femel clothes and everything should be OK.

Check the threads. There is in fact a Polish Tartan. Red, white and blue.
Guest  
12 Feb 2007 /  #18
England is a strange place with many difference diolects...

As Mr W pointed out the Geordie was one of the first diolects...

the Cornish language known as as Kernewek, is a brythonic Celtic language and not a dialect. don't ever go to Cornwall and tell them they're English. Cornwall has it's own National Anthem, as well as it's own language
OP pubgenius  
12 Feb 2007 /  #19
Polish are European since they come from Europe, so I dont really understand what you mean by that....

Yeah, sorry Amathyst, think i could have phrased it much more clearly. I meant to imply that now Poland is a member of the EU if people are starting to integrate this new level of "Europeanness" into their "Polishness". The reason i ask is that i am just reading a report saying that 34% of Poles see themselves as exclusively Polish, 23% as very much more Polish than European and 23% see themselves as equally Polish and European.

The British are now European too, but our affiliation to it remains minimal.

In Poland it seems that amongst young people this dual sense of identity is emerging rather than something purely national.

Hope this is a bit clearer
daffy 23 | 1,508  
12 Feb 2007 /  #20
eh, Ireland is in two parts, Northern (british & irish passports) and the Republic of Ireland (south) nothing to do with the United Kingdom.

Considering over 700 years trying to gain independance from tyrannical rule seems only fair to keep the distinction. Today i say, go EU!!!

I hope that the idea of being european citizens is a growing one! though we are all incredibly different on cultural levels, we do share alot of idealogys....my impression anyway
eabc 1 | 28  
12 Feb 2007 /  #21
I saw up mainly views only british people. Where do you come from guys? Not from Poland :) !

As follows:-

Difference languages / dioletcs

Difference attitutes

Difference in culture - food etc.

A. in Poland we have different:
dioletcs (even languages i.g. Kaszubski - I am nopt able to understand this language)

attitues (look at polish highlanders)

culture - different folk clothes, food (oscypek only in mountains, pyzy wielkopolska and so on)

diffrences are not barrier for as to be united :)

My thoughts are positive

I have good opinion about british people. I spent there one great year. I didn't like only one english man who thought that he was better than god, or sth. But he was only one who I did't like.

stereotypes are only stereotypes, and usually are wrong.
Wroclaw 44 | 5,387  
12 Feb 2007 /  #22
diffrences are not barrier for as to be united

It depends on the cause.
eabc 1 | 28  
12 Feb 2007 /  #23
What do you mean??
Wroclaw 44 | 5,387  
12 Feb 2007 /  #24
Political issues etc.

Don't get me wrong. I see a great deal of national pride when it comes to, for example, our sports stars when they do well.
eabc 1 | 28  
12 Feb 2007 /  #25
Political issues etc.

I know what you mean, after my coming back to Poland I wanted run away from Poland after watching news. Internal rows (on the governmant level) have been our attitudes since Poland exist. I hate it. And I really envy British that they have really stable governmant with intelligent people. Look at Beger, Leper (their names are even hopeless :)
OP pubgenius  
12 Feb 2007 /  #26
And I really envy British that they have really stable governmant with intelligent people

do you mean the British government are intelligent or the British people? I saw a recent study that said that the Polish had the 2nd highest IQ score in Europe (after Germany) with Britain coming 8th. We have people in our government who certainly aren't the brightest (I only need mention John Prescott!!!!!)
Poles support  
12 Feb 2007 /  #27
Walking back from Wandsworth Town today (Chav central).
I noticed sprayed onto boards surrounding a building site the graffiti "******* Poles stole our jobs". I'm assuming by some out of work chav.

I couldn't help laughing even my missus was laughing. These sad sad Brits who are angry at Poles don't desserve jobs. fat over weight kebab munching larger swilling louts with there fat, mcdonald craving wives and kids. I hope more Poles come over and this untermensch in British society suffers mass heart failure.

The basic fact is this those Poles that come to the Uk come to work. many lower class Brits exploit the benefits system and never aspire to **** all. I hate them.

I think we should give benefits to disabled people, single mothers. But men of working age especially in cities like London should work, no excuse.

They will claim the dole and moan about Poles and other nationalities stealing "their" work.
But will they do the jobs the immigrants do, nope.
eabc 1 | 28  
12 Feb 2007 /  #28
do you mean the British government are intelligent or the British people? I saw a recent study that said that the Polish had the 2nd highest IQ score in Europe (after Germany) with Britain coming 8th. We have people in our government who certainly aren't the brightest (I only need mention John Prescott!!!!!)

Nice :) to know that
But I didn't say about polish people generally. Our education is really good but we have in our governmant people who are after primary schools.

There is so much corruption, nobody who is normal goes involved themselves into politics in Poland because they have no honour. It is difficult to explaine but I really disappointed. I remamber that it used to be worse when i was a child but lost my hope for living in stable and wise country.
Amathyst 19 | 2,702  
12 Feb 2007 /  #29
I didn't like only one english man who thought that he was better than god, or sth. But he was only one who I did't like.

E. you get them everywhere....
Wroclaw 44 | 5,387  
12 Feb 2007 /  #30
Poles support,

Be careful what you wish for. The last time the brits found themselves out of work, due to immigration, they took matters into their own hands. I see a lot of Polish people ending up in hospital and very soon. Certain sections of the community can only take so much.

This is not a threat. It is just the way I see things. But as usual, we have discussed this all before.

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