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  1. 1. Stereotypes about Poland Natalia Biel Tomasz Szydło Katarzyna Wąż
  2. 2. IntroductionThe aim of this presentation is to make theaudience acquainted with the very term and,using the example of our own culture, show themhow differently it is seen by its natives andimmigrants.
  3. 3. What are stereotypes?Stereotypes are grossly oversimplified andovergeneralized abstractions about groups ofpeople and are usually highly inaccurate althoughthey may contain a grain of truth.(Pennington 1986: 90)A stereotype refers to those folk beliefs about theattributes characterising a social category onwhich there is substantial agreement.(Mackie 1973: 435; cited by Schneider 2004: 16)
  4. 4. Stereotypes are qualities perceived to be associatedwith particular groups or categories of people.(Schneider 2004: 24)Stereotypes can be conceived of as processes whichhave the function of simplifying judgement andwhich occur in situations characterised by littleinformation, high complexity and pressure of time.[...] They are thus tools for the management ofone’s environment with more or less distorting effects.(Schäfer 1994: 461; translated by Franklin)
  5. 5. Common stereotypes about Poland
  6. 6. Historical background- First opinions about Poles: late Middle Ages- After the defeat of the Teutonic Order in the battle of Grunwald- Poles viewed as valiant
  7. 7. - A very numerous social stratum of aristocratic knights emerges, the so-called nobility- They were characterised mainly by great patriotism, fighting for the motherland- associations: freedom, equality, democracy of nobility, honour, courage, manhood, loyalty, hospitality- But also: quarrelsomeness, litigiousness, religious intolerance, dissipated lifestyle, rowdiness
  8. 8. - The proclamation of the Martial Law in December 1981: large emigration of Poles in the 1980’s- Then, after the decay of Communism: borders lifted, more emigrants from Poland- The beginning of jokes about the Poles being notorious for stealing cars
  9. 9. The latest great wave of emigration occurredafter the Polish accession to the EuropeanUnion in 2004And so the story begins…
  10. 10. Poles do not speakforeign languages. Watch the video here:
  11. 11. Polish paradox: A Pole complains that most Poles complain.
  12. 12. Poles are intolerant and full of anti-Semitism You slob, You Romanian, You… You Jew!!
  13. 13. The Poles abuse alcohol.Drunk as a Pole (French: Ivre comme un Polonais) – a typical French saying
  14. 14. Organised crime and car theftare part of everyday life in Poland.
  15. 15. A German on A Russian on A Pole on vacation vacation vacation
  16. 16. What does Google suggest?
  17. 17. Let’s make fun of Poles!
  18. 18. Polish roads
  19. 19. A man walked into a bar and asked thebartender, "Hey, have you heard the latestPolack joke?" The bartender replied coldly,"No. And Im Polish." Thats O.K.," said theman, "Ill talk slow."How do you sink a Polish battleship?Put it in water.
  20. 20. - How many Polacks does it take to kidnap achild?- Twelve. One to kidnap the child and theremaining eleven to write a ransom letter. The first prize in a certain contest was a week in Poland. The second prize was two weeks in Poland.- Why wasnt Christ born in Poland?- Because they couldnt find three wisemenand a virgin.
  21. 21. How do we perceive Polishness???
  22. 22. Readability of Polish signs…
  23. 23. When I realised I was the symbol of Poland, I broke down.
  24. 24. - Who are you?- I’m your little Polish friend, socks and sandals I always keep at hand!
  25. 25. Jesus turned water into wine.Mr Józek turned 30 decagrams of meat into one kilo of ham!
  26. 26. UEFA has finally decided what to do with ourNational Stadium: it’s ready for rice cultivation
  27. 27. Discussion1. Try to see your own country with the eyes of a foreigner. What stereotypes are they likely to create?2. What are the ways to change a negative image of one’s country? What should be done to eliminate stereotypes? What can you do?