The paper discusses the findings from a survey conducted on representative samples from three historically dissimilar regions of Poland (Eastern Poland, Galicia, western and northern regions) and two in Ukraine (western and eastern Ukraine). It outlines the results of analyses investigating regional disparities in Poland and Ukraine, and similarities shared by all the five regions in terms of different aspects of local and national identity, taking into account the role of objective factors affecting regional disparities (mainly urbanisation rates). A series of cluster analyses has proven that the area of Poland is much more homogeneous than that of Ukraine. Likewise, western Ukrainians showed more similarity to the inhabitants of eastern and south-eastern regions of Poland than to the eastern parts of Ukraine.
The paper presents the state of development and the identity of the city of Biała Podlaska using the analysis of literature and official documents of the municipal authorities. The opinions of 316 PSW students about the city’s image and identity were also presented. The research revealed that the city’s image is strongly determined by its location near the state border and the presence of academic centres in the region. The functioning of universities affects not only the city, the surrounding towns of the municipality, but also the entire region and other places of residence and employment of graduates. The research corroborated the hypothesis that the way in which students perceive the city is important for the further development of the city.
The purpose of this article is to define the phenomenon of regionalism from the sociological perspective. Regionalism as such appeared in Europe around the mid-nineteenth century, and since then has become an object of scientific research. The article proposes an integral definition of regionalism and describes its four dimensions: identity, institutions, ideology and practice. It also identifies the cultural, economic and political types of regionalism and outlines the process of shaping regionalism in the long-term perspective. The article describes the influence of the nation state on the evolution of regionalism and analyses the relationship between regionalism and processes of state decentralisation. It also describes mutual relations of the European Union and its policies with regionalism, which is being transformed due to globalisation.
Public space of the post-modern epoch is a conglomerate or blend of discontinuous functions, a collection of loosely connected fragments, increasingly more frequently unrelated to a city. People compose for themselves their own town from individual trajectories that are outlined by means of motor roads. Neo-liberal logic of city development recognizes the rule of spontaneity wherever the interest of big capital groups dominates, pushing onto the sidelines the more important task of contemporary urban planning – the protection and development of public spaces. Due to the crisis it is undergoing at present (commercial pressure), the efforts are taken to regain its social and spatial significance. The purpose of these transformations is bonding public spaces with broader surroundings (with open terrains, waterside zones, promenades, playgrounds, etc). Such recomposition is part of a regeneration process that unites the city and reconstructs the identity of the place where relationships of inhabitants with their urban environment were not completely abandoned.
Małopolska (Lesser Poland) and Śląsk (Silesia) are historical regions which only partly overlap with the present-day borders of the Małopolskie and Śląskie voivodeships. In spite of their geographical proximity, they are historically and culturally dissimilar. A survey has been carried out in order to verify the perception of the regional identity of these voivodeships by their inhabitants. It was found that although old cultural and historical divisions are still important for the people, possible economic advantages seem to prevail. In addition, the Śląsk region as compared to the previous surveys is no longer identified with air pollution and environmental degradation.
A representative sample of 1328 participants, coming from three historically different regions of Poland (Western and Northern Lands, Eastern Wall and former Galicia), and an analogous sample of 900 participants, recruited from two different regions of Ukraine (western and eastern Ukraine) were compared with respect to different aspects of identity (place identity, place attachment, psychological rootedness, neighbourhood ties, regional and national identity, etc.). In line with the predictions, Poland turned out more homogeneous than Ukraine. Western Ukrainians showed more similarity to inhabitants of the eastern and the southern regions of Poland than to the eastern parts of Ukraine.
The aim of this article is to describe regionalism in the Warmia and Mazuria region. Although the majority of indigenous inhabitants emigrated from the region after 1945, some intellectuals who did not leave Poland established several organizations that focused on activities which may be described as ‘old regionalism’. Taking into account the political context, they tried to save the regional culture. After 1989 (the beginning of the transition period in Poland) new organizations were founded. Their members try to create a new type of regional culture and identity – a synthesis of cultures and identities of all cultural and ethnic groups living in Warmia and Mazuria. These new kinds of activities should be called ‘new regionalism’.
The main aim of this article is to apply the concept of “identity” to the analysis of phenomena and processes associated with the formation and functioning of clusters and cluster initiatives. Cluster structure is a kind of social group, and therefore should be subject to the same trends as other social groups. One of its most important characteristics (directly related to identity), observed particularly in groups whose aim is to survive for a long time, is their willingness to create mechanisms that distinguish the group and its members, and that build internal coherence and a sense of belonging of its members to the structure as a whole, and their attachment to each other.
Europe has no language which would be its symbol of identity, which would emotionally integrate its citizens. According to the official stance of the European Union the linguistic symbol of its identity is its multilingualism, which is confirmed by the fact that it has 23 official languages. The official multilingualism causes some problems connected with translation and interpretation. (For simultaneous translation from all 23 to all other 23 official languages theoretically as many as 506 interpreters are needed). There are techniques reducing this number, but at the expense of time and quality of interpretation). For pragmatic reasons EU institutions increasingly use English alone in their internal activity and in their contacts with member states and other institutions, thus de facto promoting English as the contact language of the EU. English, however, is not a specifically European lingua franca. The role of English as lingua franca in Europe is growing, but as English is the global lingua franca and the spread of English is a sign of globalisation, English cannot at the same time unite Europe and separate it from the rest of the world. Even more so that there is political opposition to the growing role of English in Europe. Therefore the link between language and identity in Europe consists not in possessing a single language (or languages) as its symbol of identity and centre of loyalty and as an instrument of internal communication and external separation. It consists in the fact that the use of English and other contact languages and the mechanism of interpretation and translation in the EU enable circulation of information and ideas which eventually may contribute to the creation (strengthening?) of the sense of European identity.
Many goods that are used by urban dwellers are common goods. They are used by many entities at the same time, which generates problems typical of public goods. The goods are, among others, public spaces and properties, urban transport and infrastructure, but also such immaterial elements as shared urban values and attitudes, urban culture and identity. Today’s urban commons are subject to dynamic transformations in the way they are created, supplied, and used. The aim of the paper is to present the notion of urban common goods theoretically, from the perspective of urban economics, as well as to review key methodological challenges which are important from the point of view of potential studies on this phenomenon.
The paper is based on the results of empirical studies concerning town identity building conducted in 206 selected town administration offices in Poland during the years 2003–2005. The paper aimed at identifying the main identity strategy instruments applied in Polish towns. For that purpose the major town identity building instruments related to visualization, communication and pattern of behaviours including marketing activities, were identified and characterized. Those instruments should be focused around the most important attributes of a given town. It was established, however, that towns expose too many attributes of identity in their strategies hence the image created can become unclear and illegible.
The language question are phenomena resulting from contacts of two or more languages on the same territory or in the same community. It consists in co-existence and/or conflicts of languages and in language policies carried out by national and regional governments, and by ethnic movements aiming at maintaining or changing the language situation on a given territory. The main issues linked to the language question in the contemporary world are the following: 1) domination of the English language as an international language, supported by the globalisation and facilitating the globalisation. The domination of English puts on unequal footing people of the world and causes dissatisfaction of some parts of non-English native speakers; 2) extinction of languages as a result of assimilation of small ethno-linguistic groups. This phenomenon generates alarm of some groups of scientists and public opinion; 3) language barrier hampering development of education, economy and democracy in many parts of the world, especially in the post-colonial countries; 4) international migrations. These put migrants themselves and societies and governments of recipient countries in front of the question of the attitude towards maintaining of the cultural and linguistic identity of the migrants, this question being solved in different ways in different countries and historical periods.
The aim of this paper is to characterize three main concepts of region developed in the period of the 2nd Republic. First of all, the Author describes the ethnographic concept of region, created by Kazimierz Moszyński. He focuses on tangible differentiators of region. Józef Obrębski, who is Moszyński’s disciple, takes as a basis the ethnographic concept of region and adds to it the idea that a region is formed in contact between members of a regional group with the Other. Józef Chałasiński, the author of the third concept, shares Obrębski’s view and adds that it is in contact with the Other that is developed the most important factor in the region-building process, namely regional identity. The paper offers information on the theoretical tradition of sociology of region in today’s Poland.
This paper explores the interrelationships between religious attitudes, ethnic and linguistic identities, and geopolitical preferences in three geopolitical fault-line cities in Eastern Ukraine – Mariupol, Kharkiv, and Dnipro. The research is based on data taken from a survey and the associated descriptive statistics and correlation analysis. The findings suggest that the religious divide in Eastern Ukraine does not generate additional division but instead strengthens the existing divide, which is known to be formulated in terms of geopolitical as opposed to language or ethnicity-based categories, although language and ethnicity do have an influence on geopolitical preferences. Moreover, civic-national identity appears to be more relevant than ethnic-national identity to understanding the religious fault-line in Eastern Ukraine.
The war initiated by the Russian Federation against Ukraine in 2022 can be seen as a drastic shock event with unpredictable long-term socio-political consequences at the national, regional and global levels. This study aims to identify the impact of war-related disturbances on the dynamics of social cleavages in Ukraine, in particular the possibility of deepening or diminishing such cleavages or promoting the occurrence of new ones. For decades, the internal partition of Ukraine into East and West has been attributed to national self-identification, linguistic and religious peculiarities and the geopolitical preferences of residents of different regions. Shortly before and after the outbreak of the Russian invasion, fundamental changes in Ukrainian society and domestic politics became evident, some of which can be interpreted as signs of the mitigation of social cleavages. Our findings revealed at least two significant shifts in these ‘old’, traditional cleavages: one occurred after the Revolution of Dignity and the annexation of Crimea by Russia in 2014, and the second one is emerging now, due to the full-scale war on Ukrainian territory against the Ukrainian people. More broadly, this research aims to assess the resilience of social cleavages in the face of a shock event.
The aim of the article is to examine if the form of ownership is a base of social identifications as important as a space of living. Author presents results of own research, conducted in Szczecin in Social Housing Associations area. The results show that forms of ownership become important part of social identity, even more than location in urban space.
Referring to the Polish regionalization from the perspective of European integration and globalization, the paper proposes a model of regional analysis based on theoretical conceptions of Pierre Bourdieu and Anssi Paasi. Region as a social field of new generation, regional habitus constructed within it and an imago regionis as a new type of regional identity are the key concepts of the proposed model. Multi-stage institutionalization of region, which results in an idiosyncratic regional identity, is the main process analysed by means of the model. The identity functions on the one hand at the level of territorial marketing, on the other it interacts with mental and behavioural patterns constitutive of regional habitus, conditioning adaptive and innovative potential of regional communities. The proposed approach enables to see region in the perspective of global change on the one hand, while on the other, it draws attention to possibilities of local modification of the conditions, within which it is implemented. While it sustains the weight of socio-cultural factors in regional analyses, at the same time it makes it possible to reach beyond narrowly conceived perspective of cultural identity, dominant in sociologically minded studies of regions.
The text is an essay of analysis of the relations and interactions between the main protagonists of the “Warsaw scene”: the local administration representatives, anthropologists and sociologists, architects, urbanists, journalists and common citizens. The author is trying to summarise the discourse about the public space in Warsaw and about the difficulties in communication that concern the public discussion on the topic. The aim of the analysis is also to define the place of Warsaw as a city that belongs as well to the Europeans’ metropolises and to the towns of the Third World at the same time. The main topic concerns the view of the public spaces and its social functions in case of Warsaw, the position and roles of the heroes of “the game of the city space”, the architectural and urbanistic structure, the citizens’ identity and other issues. The essay is based on the personal research and TNS OBOP’s surveys and discourse analysis of the media content.
The paper deals with the analysis of spatial identification treated as the process of individual identification with the particular space by taking the role of the inhabitant of the particular territory as well as the sense of the connection with the territorial community which makes the social group of positive reference for the individual. The paper analyses two measures of spatial identification: individual identification and collective one. The analyse results in answering the question what is the range of coherence of spatial references of Lodz inhabitants. In order to do that the typology including indicated aspects of spatial identification was created. Obtained results present that within investigated individuals category including the process of identification with the city in individual measure and treating the neighbour community as the reference group dominates. That is why it is necessary to notice the lack of the coherence between individual and collective measure of spatial identification of Lodz inhabitants.