Widely Open Closed Doors. Contemporary Repatriation Policy in Poland

Daria Łucka

Abstrakt

This article focuses on the repatriation policy of the Polish state toward co-ethnics residing in some post-Soviet countries. Its main goal is to answer the question: Why has this policy been unsuccessful? Based on the existing literature, legislation and official documents, the article draws upon the approach laid down by Olga Zeveleva (2014), exploring two spheres within the repatriation program: the ideological and the practical. The key argument is that the failure of the repatriation policy in Poland was due to its poorly developed practical component. At the same time, its ideological component was fully in place, contributing to the program’s prolongation, even though it had not been bringing the expected results. In conclusion, it is argued that the persistence and strong ideological rooting of the idea of repatriation confirm an important aspect of the identity of the Polish state: the predominance of the ethnic concept of the nation. The analysis of the Polish case also shows the need for further development of Zeveleva’s conceptualisation of the success (or lack thereof) of repatriation.

Słowa kluczowe: political sociology, kin-state policies, repatriation, post-communist Poland
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