CENTRAL EUROPEAN IDENTITY OF POLAND AND THE CZECH REPUBLIC IN THE LIGHT OF THE OPINIONS OF THE INHABITANTS OF THE CZECH–POLISH BORDERLAND AND IN THE RELEVANT LITERATURE (Polish title below)
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(Polish title: Srodkowoeuropejskosc Polski i Czech w swietle opinii mieszkancow pogranicza czesko-polskiego oraz literatury przedmiotu) Although the question of the very existence of Central Europe was not discussed in the article, it was assumed that there is still some space for this category to appear. The core of the text was based on the results of the research which showed that the Czechs living in the Czech-Polish borderland perceive their country as a bit more Central European than Poland. Thus the article is an attempt to explain the reasons of such an attitude. They include the past, i.e., first of all, geopolitical orientation of both states over centuries, resulting in different cultural patterns acquired by both societies, as well as the present times which seem to reflect at least some of these differences. The analysis is enriched with some observations made by other authors, including their opinions on the ways in which the Czech-Polish relations were presented in the Czech history coursebooks of the 1990s. One of the most significant conclusions is that Poland and Poles are seen by the Czechs rather as a ‘Western' nation when it comes to the arts or literature, and rather as an ‘Eastern' nation when it comes to everyday life. It was also argued that the difference in the degree of Central European identity of both countries does not seem to be big enough to ‘exclude' Poland from this category, yet sufficient to be signalled by the respondents.
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