Poland is one of the world leaders in accepting migrant workers. At present, over 423,000 foreigners in Poland have valid residence documents. However, it is estimated that the actual number of foreigners is much higher and could reach even several million people. Translated into percentages, national minorities, including the current and previous migration waves, can amount to approx. 5% of Poland’s population.
Migrants are among us, they work mostly in retail, services, construction, and industrial production. We encounter them every day. They include both specialists and people who only started to gather experience; young and mature; those who know Polish and those who begin to learn it. They are a diverse group.
Immigrants shape the reality of the countries which are considered democratic, and yet they have no influence on their political shape. Is there room for them as active participants of the political life? What role could these new citizens play in the current democratic system? Are we able to see the future as a place where borders are no longer a barrier for democracy?
We will be discussing the social and political dimension of the (lack of) presence of immigrants in Poland in the context of Marta Romankiv’s artistic intervention.
Link to the Zoom Meeting:
Meeting ID: 978 823 8423
Natalia Gebert – cultural expert by education, translator by profession, bookwork by avocation. Co-founder of the informal initiative Dom Otwarty (Open House) in Warsaw. Since 2015 she has been involved in social activism for refugees and raising awareness about migration. In 2018, she received the award from the Capital City of Warsaw in recognition of her social work.
Ewa Piepiora – PhD in social sciences, her research interests focus on social and immigration policies. She has experience in working with persons in danger of social exclusion. For several years, she has been a member of the Refugees Szczecin association.
Marta Romankiv – Born in 1995 in Lviv. Interdisciplinary artist, creator of installations, video art and social situations. The artist is interested in all sorts of minorities, especially in connection with the issues of nationality, citizenship and related social inequalities, identity issues and legal problems. She lives and works in Poland.
Dr hab. Fuad Jomma – Syrian Kurd. He researches the issues of political and socio-cultural identity of the Middle East. He currently teaches at the University of Szczecin in the Institute of Political Sciences and Security
dr Jędrzej Wijas – exhibition curator in TRAFO Centre of Contemporary Art in Szczecin, academic teacher, in 2002–2014 Szczecin city councillor specialising in cultural and social issues.
June 23 2020
Inaudible voices, invisible votes.