Full-text resources of CEJSH and other databases are now available in the new Library of Science.
Visit https://bibliotekanauki.pl


2007 | 42 | 37-68

Article title

Distinctive characteristics of contemporary everyday Polish


Selected contents from this journal

Title variants

Languages of publication



The article deals with language in its specific realization (the level of parole) in everyday popular communication in a given place and time, i.e. the vivid language of spontaneous statements and dialogues. The field of direct observation is the Polish language of the last quarter of the century, and more precisely over the years since 1989, to which the authoress gives the name of the 'language of everyday communication, everyday Polish'. Its main characteristics are: (1)- Exceptional speed in creating, accepting and introducing new lexemes and word forms into social circulation and also of giving new meanings to already existing words or expanding their previously accepted meanings; (2)- The introduction of numerous and various foreign elements, mainly English ones; (3)- The introduction of numerous elements of slang, i.e. trivial and even vulgar lexemes; (4)- Today's Polish social space is dominated by a youth who impose their style of behaviour, also in terms of linguistics. As a consequence, newly created morphological forms and word combinations need not be correct, nor elegant, but on the contrary - they are meant to be unexpected, surprising; on the one hand they are supposed to form a part of commercialised culture, and on the other constitute a part of a laid-back style of life; (5)- The everyday Polish of our times is full of expressivisms, manifesting mostly negative emotions; (6)- The image of contemporary everyday Polish reflects perfectly well an important characteristic of Poles, i.e. their huge word formation ability, a creativity in the widest sense of the word. Poles not only create numerous new forms of words, but above all give new meanings to words and enrich everyday communication by new word combinations of accurate, frequently funny senses and extended meaning. The article is comprised of rich linguistic material illustrating the above mentioned characteristics.






Physical description

Document type



  • K. Handke, Instytut Slawistyki PAN, ul. Bartoszewicza 1b, m. 17, 00-337 Warszawa, Poland


Document Type

Publication order reference


CEJSH db identifier

YADDA identifier

JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.