THE NIKOS BELOJANIS ASSOCIATION OF POLITICAL REFUGEES FROM GREECE IN POLAND, POZNAN BRANCH
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The civil war in Greece in the years 1946-1949 resulted, among others, in the departure of about 100 thousand citizens of this state. It was the biggest emigration wave after the Second World War. Part of the émigrés were settled in Poland on rights of political asylum, in a total of 15 215 persons. First refugees came to Poznań from Greece in 1951 from Zgorzelec. It was a group of men and part of them started studying at the Radio-technical College (Technikum Radiotechniczne). In the next year families came to join them. In the period from 1952 to 1985 in Poznań lived 20 families, and about 80 persons stayed here temporarily. Most of the men found employment in the 'Poznanska Wytwórnia Papierosów' (the Poznan Cigarette Factory) and in the 'Zakłady Przemyslu Metalowego H. Cegielski' (H. Cegielski Metal Works). The article represents the fates of this ethnic group in Poznan, in the economic, social and cultural plane, including the everyday life of Greeks grouped in the Poznan branch of the Association of Political Refugees from Greece in Poland. It shows also their cultural life, cultivation of their own language and culture, and learning Polish history and tradition of the region. During those years the Greeks assimilated ethnically and were socially promoted thanks to the educational ambitions of the young generation of Greeks studying in Poznan. Greeks also enriched the city's cultural life. One might mention here such figures as the poet Nikos Chadzinikolau who wrote mainly in Polish, and the operatic singer Paulos Raptis or the singer Eleni.
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