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Discrimination for the Sake of the Nation

The Discourse of the League of Polish Families against «Others» 2001-2007


Yasuko Shibata

This book examines the intertwined relationship between contemporary Polish politics and national culture by focusing on the phenomenon of discrimination. The object of the analysis is the language of the League of Polish Families, a populist party that recreated the climate of pre-war National Democracy in Poland from 2001 to 2007 by negatively labeling the nation’s Others. Through the political party’s discourse of discrimination, the book grasps a peculiar moment of Poland that faced uncertainty of identity upon its accession to the European Union. By adopting a method of critical discourse analysis, the author attests to the party’s political use of different layers of national traditions in denigrating Jews, sexual minorities and feminists while sanctifying the Polish nation.


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V. The LPR’s Homophobic Discourse


This chapter analyzes the LPR’s discriminatory discourse on sexual minorities – the homophobic discourse. After a clarification of basic words, the first section presents the social and political contexts that are necessary to understand the homophobic discourse of LPR from 2001 to 2007. In the first section, in an overview of the post-1989 development of the LGBT movement in Poland, a rough image of this chapter’s primary “actor,” i.e. the Poles of homo- and bi- sexual orientation as well as those of transgender nature, will be introduced. Qualitative sociological studies on the Polish LGBT organizations as well as the inter-disciplinary works of gender studies/queer studies scholars, who are them- selves creating the LGBT movement, are utilized as materials. The second sec- tion shows the general public attitudes and political events concerning sexual minorities in Polish society. The quantitative data used here includes surveys regularly conducted by the Center of Social Opinion Research (CBOS) and by such LGBT organizations as Lambda Warsaw, Campaign against Homophobia (KPH) and ILGA Europe since 2001; press coverage tendencies on sexual mi- nority issues, the public debate on the rights of sexual minorities (led by the daily Gazeta Wyborcza in August 2002), as well as different empirical studies commenting on such primary data, will offer a more specific picture of the Poles’ attitudes. The remaining sections are allotted to the actual textual analysis of the LPR’s homophobic discourse. The period of the analysis is divided at June 2004, i.e. the time of the country’s first European Parliamentary...

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