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Poland and every aspect..... Please help me learn and understand the realities?


p3undone 8 | 1,135
12 Sep 2012  #1
I have been on PF for a little while now and I have seen some very good discussions about Poland;I just wish that I could learn more about Poland and be able to join in on these discussions.If I don't know about a subject I will not join in on the conversation.I'm especially interested in Polish Politics.I've seen some very insightful discussions from both sides of the issue.I am very interested in learning about the culture and the stories behind festivals and holidays etc.History is also what I would like to learn about,as I have described in the title,every aspect,So if members would be so kind to as to indulge me,I would really appreciate it.Thank you.
teflcat 5 | 1,032
12 Sep 2012  #2
I think you need to be a bit more specific p3.
I'd personally like to know why name days are more important to some people than their birthdays.
Harry
12 Sep 2012  #3
History is also what I would like to learn about

Polish history it is viewed by some here rather more artistically than scientifically. For example, in the west Norman Davies was found to have scientific flaws in his work which made him unsuited to tenure at Stanford, to reference archives that do not exist and to make fundamental mistakes with things like the year things happened; in Poland, however, he is viewed one of the best historians in the world, ever, and has honourary degrees from many universities here. Conversely, in the west Jan Gross is the Norman B. Tomlinson '16 and '48 Professor of War and Society and Professor of History at Princeton University; but to some in Poland he is not even a historian!
goofy_the_dog
12 Sep 2012  #4
Well what do you want to learn in the history?? Which period?
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
12 Sep 2012  #5
Thank you for responding guys,sorry that I haven't responded back to you,but I was busy today and away from my computer.What I would like to know is how did Poland originally come to be,was it at first feudal state or regions that one man unified?I can read about this stuff,but I learn best by conversing and especially with the people on here that have so much knowledge in all things Polish.Teflcat,As for specificity,As this thread goes along I will ask questions and some may be on a whim.Goofy the_the_dog,feel free to throw in at any time you like on this question.
pip 10 | 1,661
12 Sep 2012  #6
A really good fictional but based on historical non fiction is the book Poland by James Michner. It goes through all eras and I believe ends at ww2. It might be worth a read.
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
12 Sep 2012  #7
pip,Thank you,I love Michner and I had that book,but lost it,I will read it though.I want to discuss with expats,citizens and Polonia.I feel that I will get a better understanding than I would ever get in texts.Michner gives beautiful crash courses in his his Historic Fictional books and that will give me a nice base.
Ironside 48 | 9,695
12 Sep 2012  #8
Polish history it is viewed by some here rather more artistically than scientifically.

Not artistically but politically rather, experience thought Poles that history can and will be used against them if they are not careful enough.
Norman Davis has many flaws as a historian and undoubtedly made many minor errors or outdated diagnoses. However he was one of those western historian who didn't wrote about Poland with all the luggage of prejudice and outright lies which are/were prevalent in the western historiography of the last 70 - 60 years.

Jan Gross is do not hold degree in history. No matter, he could be a good historian if not for the fact the he sold his objectivity and moral values for money.

Namely he writes not history but fiction in guise of history ergo cannot be historian. His last book Golden Harvest proves it without a doubt, that picture on which he based his story is something else than he claims.

What is sad is a fact that there is market for made up stories about certain nationalities and also that such dirty and low proceeder is possible under Princeton University roof. I understand that history is not important there but they should uphold some basic standards, right?

Thank you

You maybe go form there and get this book, it is worthwhile: amazon.co.uk/Piast-Poland-Jasienica/dp/188128400X/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
12 Sep 2012  #9
Ironside,thank you,If you wouldn't mind giving me some information that you have pertaining to my question,I would really appreciate it.
legend 3 | 664
12 Sep 2012  #10
I think you need to be a bit more specific p3.
I'd personally like to know why name days are more important to some people than their birthdays.

Yep its strange. I celebrate both.
Names days might be related to religion and the Saints (but not 100 sure).
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
12 Sep 2012  #11
Pawiaaan! Pawiaaan!,can you help me out here?I have some questions for you about Poland.
pawian 159 | 9,428
12 Sep 2012  #12
No problem. Where are you going to voice them? In this thread?
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
12 Sep 2012  #13
Lol,thank you,I was asking how Poland came to be,was it once feudal states or regions and then unified by a strong man or king?Please tell me in you're words?I appreciate it.Yes this is why I set this up so that we can talk all about every aspect of Poland,right now the focus is on History.

rybniiiik! rybniiiik!,I need your help on my thread,I would like to ask you questions about Poland if you wouldn't mind?
strzyga 2 | 993
13 Sep 2012  #14
I'd personally like to know why name days are more important to some people than their birthdays.

Aren't you Irish, Teflcat? If so, just think St. Patrick's Day, it's like the whole country's nameday.
The namedays came from the idea of saint patrons. In older times people usually gave their children names of saints and the saint was supposed to protect and guide the baby through life, therefore the day associated with a saint was special for the person named after them.

There were lots of Catholic saints so practically every day of the year had a patron or two.
Also, a child often got the name which it "brought itself" coming to this world - meaning that a child born on St. John's day got the name John, and so on. This way, the birthday and the nameday were on the same day.

Another thing is that in older times the saints or church holidays were the usual way of telling time. Nobody knew when, let's say, 17th February was - in any case, it took some serious thinking and lots of calculating - but everybody knew St. Agnes' or St. Gregory's day.

The Protestant churches got rid of the saints, so just the birthdays remained. In Poland though, celebrating birthdays is a relatively new thing. Even my parents didn't do it when they were kids.

One more factor is that the official birth dates often did not correspond with the real ones. In my family, most of the aunts and uncles who were born shortly before the war, during the war or just after the war, have double birth dates - the real ones and the official ones, written in the documents. They were born at home and although there was an obligation to register a child within a given period of time, sometimes weeks passed before anybody had a chance to do it. And there were fines for not registering on time, so they didn't think twice about giving the registry office a wrong, later date. One of my aunts was born in October 1942 but the documents state January 1943.

Also, the namedays were convenient - you did not need to remember all the individual birth dates, but everybody in Poland knows when Barbaras or Stanisławs celebrate their namedays :)
poland_
13 Sep 2012  #15
Norman Davies was found to have scientific flaws in his work which made him unsuited to tenure at Stanford

Although it did suit him to the University of Oxford
sant.ox.ac.uk/russian/davies.html

Stanford won the case on the basis of appointments based on academic criteria NOT on scientific flaws of Davies's work.
news.stanford.edu/pr/91/910905Arc1210.html

Moreover the case was over 20 years ago.
Polonius3 1,000 | 12,448
13 Sep 2012  #16
It's also conveninet to the age-conscious female half of the population. No-one coming to the party will ask: Whcih nameday is this, as someone might with a birthday. And no-one will comment on how few candles there are on the cake, because there is no such thing as a special nameday cake.
teflcat 5 | 1,032
13 Sep 2012  #17
Thanks very much for your informative reply; much obliged.

Aren't you Irish, Teflcat?

Half: mother Irish, Dad a Londoner. In fact I've probably got a bit more than half, as they used to say in London, "Everyone has an Irish grandmother". Then again, my mother's grandfather was English. People in the British isles are well mixed up genetically, which no doubt strengthens the gene pool.
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
13 Sep 2012  #18
strzyga,So was there any kind of celebration for name day and thanks for the the info btw.
bullfrog 6 | 603
13 Sep 2012  #19
I have been on PF for a little while now and I have seen some very good discussions about Poland.

A few facts for a start:

- Poland has the 2nd oldest written constitution in the world (3rd May 1793)
- The Polish-Lithuanian was at one time the largest European state by area spanning from the Baltic sea down to the Black sea
- Polish kings were elected by nobility, unlike the rule prevailing in Western Europe (hereditary monarchy). That explains why Poland had many kings/ queens of foreign origin (hungarian, french, swedish..). It is thanks to a swedish king that Warsaw became capital at the end of the XVI th century (before that , it was Krakow but the swedish king wanted to be closer from Sweden!)
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
13 Sep 2012  #20
Bullfrog,was Poland originally feudal and then at some point unified,Is this the case with Piast?btw.thank you.

Ok,So it's starting to come together;I've learned about name day,which previously I had no idea there was a name day.I got a few facts about Polands past.I have no Idea how Poland's Monarchic system operated.It was interesting to learn that Her kings were elected by the nobility.If any one wants to volunteer information that hasn't been asked for this would be cool.
teflcat 5 | 1,032
13 Sep 2012  #21
If you walk through a doorway in Poland and then hold the door open for someone else coming behind you, why don't they thank you? This used to p1ss me off but I know Polish people are generally very polite, so it must be something else. I know this may seem trivial when compared with elected kings, etc. but it intrigues me.
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
13 Sep 2012  #22
Teflcat,all your questions are welcome and I hope that they get answered.I will learn more about Poland.I want to understand all aspects,not just History or Politics.I want to attain enough working knowledge to be able to contribute to Polish discussions,I am fascinated by Poland and the reason I joined PF is so that I could learn about her.
InWroclaw 89 | 1,915
13 Sep 2012  #23
If you walk through a doorway in Poland and then hold the door open for someone else coming behind you, why don't they thank you? This used to p1ss me off but I know Polish people are generally very polite, so it must be something else. I know this may seem trivial when compared with elected kings, etc. but it intrigues me.

Sorry about that, that was me the other day, I couldn't remember the word in Polish for thank you - yes as embarrassing as that is to admit on a public forum! By the time I had remembered, the person was already up the stairs in my block.
Ziemowit 12 | 3,455
13 Sep 2012  #24
I was asking how Poland came to be,was it once feudal states or regions and then unified by a strong man or king?

966 is the starting year for Poland as a state. Poland had become part of the Christian world in that year on 14 April, thus having been recognized by other Christian states of Europe. Mieszko I was the prince who united Poland. His legendary predecessors were: Piast (son of Chościsko), Siemowit or Ziemowit (one after whom I take my nick on the PF), Lestek, Siemomysł or Ziemomysł. The capital of Poland at that time was Gniezno. The nearby town of Poznań started to be erected in 940 according to the newest dendrological findings (or at least trees which were used for this construction were cut down in that year).
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
13 Sep 2012  #25
Ziemowit, thank you, were these turbulent times,did Mieszko 1 meet any violent resistance from from certain noble factions?What was Poland classified as before this time?
bullfrog 6 | 603
13 Sep 2012  #27
If you walk through a doorway in Poland and then hold the door open for someone else coming behind you, why don't they thank you? This used to p1ss me off but I know Polish people are generally very polite, so it must be something else. I know this may seem trivial when compared with elected kings, etc. but it intrigues me.

I think the answer to that one is quite simple; it was until recently the norm (ie expected) in Poland for men to hold doors with women, to hold coats etc.. You usually don' t get thanked for "normal behaviour" but you get frowned upon if you don't do it. .. In Western Europe, it's the contrary:holding a door etc has become so rare that doing it for someone elicits a "thank you".

was Poland originally feudal and then at some point unified,Is this the case with Piast

Poland was populated by several tribes and it is indeed under the Piast and Mieszko 1st that Poland as we know it was unified and created.
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
13 Sep 2012  #28
Stryzga,no,but thank you for the link.I will check it out though.I set this thread up so that I can ask specific questions which will draw out insight as well as give me an academic understanding of Polish issues across the board,There is really no set pattern to this thread.I'm hoping to get questions answered and information not asked for which in turn will spawn new questions:)Anything type of information that you would like to contribute would be very much appreciated indeed:)

Bullfrog,was there a strong resistance from any of the tribes?
Ironside 48 | 9,695
13 Sep 2012  #29
Poland was formed around one dynasty who manged to prevail in one of the tribes. The said dynasty manages overrule or somehow install itself as an over-chef of all heads of phylum.

Surrendered by other tribes who were ruled by religious elites, council of heads of phylum's or other less successful dynasties, they come on on the top and expanded by incorporating slowly other tribes into their sphere of influence.

The said dynasty the Piast dynasty started in all likelihood when guardian of the sons of some local ruler in Gniezno, set aside his wardens and took over their place for himself and his progeny.

About 966 his great grandson ruling a big territory introduced Christianity to his realm and that where the history of the Polish Nation started.
I hope that answer your question.
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
14 Sep 2012  #30
Yes it does,thank you Ironside.Was Piast a benevolent ruler?How did the nobility get on with Piast at the time?


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