Understanding Polishness

  • Krzysztof JaskułowskiEmail author


This chapter analyses the significance interviewees attached to national identification, i.e., how they understood the Polish nation and its boundaries. It demonstrates the central importance of national identity, which was perceived as natural and obvious. The chapter shows that the interviewees defined the Polish nation primarily in historical and cultural terms. The Polish state was understood as an emanation of a culturally defined nation. The chapter argues that this type of understanding of Poland’s belonging criteria makes the Polish nation rather closed to newcomers. It claims that the dominant vernacular concept of Polishness has substantial exclusionary potential and can be easily mobilised against migrants.


Polish nation Polish national identity National exclusion and inclusion Immigration 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Arts and Social SciencesSWPS University of Social Sciences and HumanitiesWarsawPoland

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