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CCPS Lecture. "What’s in a Name? – A lot!" From Gypsy to Rom: The Roma in Polish Discourse on Minorities

Ewa Pasek, Ladislav Matějka Collegiate Lecturer, Polish & Czech studies, Slavic languages and literatures, U-M
Thursday, March 14, 2024
5:30-7:00 PM
Room 555 Weiser Hall Map
The Romani population in Poland amounts to a mere 0.13%. However, the image of the Gypsy is so deeply ingrained in Polish consciousness and culture that it serves as a constant fixture in a conceptual museum, meticulously preserved, yet frequently incongruous with reality.

This lecture focuses on language as it reflects, describes, creates, shapes, and replicates the relationship between the Romani ethnic minority and the Polish ethnic majority. The presented analysis of various internet genres (including online discussions, advertisements, social media comments, and memes) places this language use within the broader context of the ongoing Polish discourse on the position and role of ethnic and national minorities within contemporary Polish society. This diverse collection of statements reveals multiple threads of discourse, spanning from the presence of Romani culture in folk rituals and traditions, to the illusory semblance of tolerance and acceptance in a largely monocultural society, as well as issues related to ethics and values, such as attitudes towards work, public property, and ethnic identity.

Ewa Małachowska-Pasek, PhD, is Ladislav Matějka Collegiate Lecturer and lecturer in Polish and Czech Studies in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures at U-M. Her research focuses on language acquisition, Critical Language Studies, and Romani Studies. She teaches Polish and Czech and courses on the Roma minority in Central Europe. She is a co-founder and board member of the North American Association of Teachers of Polish, and the co-translator of The Romance of Teresa Hennert by Zofia Nałkowska and The Career of Nicodemus Dyzma by Tadeusz Dołęga-Mostowicz (winner of the 2021 Found in Translation Award). Prior to her work at U-M, she worked in the Polish Language Institute at the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw.

If there is anything we can do to make this event accessible to you, please contact us. Please be aware that advance notice is necessary as some accommodations may require more time for the university to arrange.
Building: Weiser Hall
Event Type: Lecture / Discussion
Tags: eastern europe, europe, poland
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Copernicus Center for Polish Studies, Center for European Studies, International Institute, Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies, Weiser Center for Europe and Eurasia, Slavic Languages & Literatures