DOI: 10.2478/ppsr-2023-0016 ISSN: 2353-3773

Changes of Polish Democracy and their Impact on Polish Belarusians

Agnieszka Kasińska-Metryka, Rafał Dudała
  • Ocean Engineering


The Belarusian minority in Poland is the second largest national minority, almost entirely concentrated in Podlasie. Qualitative research conducted by our team in 2020 allowed diagnosis of the reasons for the “invisibility” of Belarusians. The Polish state’s policy has always influenced the mood of Belarusians who, despite being passive in creating their own political representation, are often identified as the electorate of left-wing parties. Currently, eight years after the 2015 elections won by the PiS party (Prawo i Sprawiedliwość, Law and Justice), Podlaskie Voivodeship is sometimes referred to as a “bastion of the right”, especially of extreme right-wing forces. The aim of the paper is to determine the impact of the current political situation on the sense of identity of the Belarusian minority by referring to the results of the National Census of 2002 and 2011, as well as the circumstances and results of the 2021 census. The analysis pays attention to factors such as historical policy, religion, and axiology, which determine the “borderland identity”. The research method used is primarily a comparative method, but we also applied the results of interviews based on scenarios, conducted in selected Podlasie municipalities with at least 50% of Polish Belarusians.

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