Being Silesian - Być Ślązakiem

Uploaded by IRWorldNews on 30.08.2011

Can the Silesian region be differentiated from the other regions in Poland?
Can one mention something that is considered to be Silesian?
With certainty, we are the most industrialized region in Poland.
We have the highest concentration of people living in cities,
and this is our characteristic.
We also have on one side many resources and on the other problems such as mining.
On one hand we get many advantages from it, and on the other hand it damages the environment.
Someone who is a Silesian and someone who was born here since 1945.
Someone will get upset: how is that possible, since 1945 a Silesian?
Someone can have another theory that a Silesian must be rooted in this land, right?
This person must be raised in this land, there must be at least three generations.
There are many definitions. I would propose an optimistic definition:
a Silesian is someone who loves Silesia.
Is there such a thing as a Silesian ethnic group?
According to me, definitely not. History does not allow such a statement.
The Silesian language is based on proto-Polish. Therefore, I don’t see such a thing.
They are more culturally similar to the western model and that should be appreciated.
We approach this region as a multi-cultural region,
and we want to see this as a place where many cultures interact and influence each other,
and not a homogenous, monstrous place.
I wouldn’t want to be like the intolerant people here,
because the intolerance here is horrible.
Well, the older Silesians were talking…
when we came to Silesia, they called us "central Poland’s gorole" [slang for non-Silesians]
"Why are they coming here to take our jobs."
But now it is not like that anymore, and now young people… those days are over.
Such a backward, non-European, conservative as hell.
A Silesian is someone who cannot mess around with,
if a Varsovian tells him something, he wouldn’t let it go, he would not let someone tease him.
In the bus going to Ligota [district in Katowice],
people… I was speaking in Spanish with my friends,
and people were looking at us like they haven’t seen any tourist in Katowice.
It was such a hermitic, closed cage,
and now it’s like, the young people… it’s different than it used to be.
I think that for some time something is starting,
there is an increase of positive energy around the region, even among the visitors.
There are more signals coming from not only the locals, but also from the visitors,
that here is a positive energy, great place to live,
that there is an interest in the regional culture, history, folklore, Silesian dialect, and etc.
I think that Silesia is a great place and according to me underappreciated.
Many people don’t appreciate Silesia, even among Silesians.
During my studies, above my bed I had a poster with touristic Silesian attractions
and if someone would make fun of it, that person was from Silesia.
You know what, Kazimierz Kutz once said in his latest book “Fifth Side of the World”,
that it’s important to take care of one’s identity, because it is like the rudder that steers a boat.