Document 1684

Interview with two Polish speakers in Glasgow

Author(s): N/A

Copyright holder(s): SCOTS Project

Audio transcription

F1205 The first question, er, is to you, [CENSORED: forename]. Where are you from originally?
F1206 Er, I'm from Poland.
F1205 Mmhm. Where in Poland?
F1206 Er, so I was born in the centre of Poland, but I studied er in Wrocław, which is a town in the south-west of Poland.
F1205 So that erm place where you were born, is it a small town?
F1206 Yeah, it's a village. //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1205 //So wh-how old were you when you moved?//
F1206 Finally, fifteen because also er when I went er to secondary school er I lived in student halls, something? [?]Rezydencja[/?]? Something like that, already. And after that I lived a year in Paris, and after that I come back er to Poland to study at University in Wrocław.
F1205 Mmhm. So how long have you lived in Glasgow?
F1206 Er so I've been living er here almost for three years, in March will be three years.
F1205 Okay, and what do you do here?
F1206 So at the moment er I'm studying English at college and I'm working in a food company as a production worker. So I make er tortilla wraps. //But I hope to find er//
F1205 //Okay.//
F1206 a better job er mm because in Poland I er work as er a French teacher, //so maybe in the future//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 here I will find mm the same job, //or maybe as a Polish teacher.//
F1205 //Mmhm.// Mmhm. So how do you feel in Glasgow now that you work as a production worker and er not not as a teacher? Is that...? Do you feel okay with it?
F1206 Er at the beginning it was okay, er,
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 a good experience, especially because in Poland when I... before I er living, I worked too much, and I was a little tired, so it was a great break for me.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 But now it's not enough for me, //so I would like to find a better job.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.// Do you think there's something special about you being Polish, er, do you think there's something special being a Polish woman in Glasgow?
F1206 Mm maybe not Polish but er foreign er woman, because er that's, at the beginning er of course I had problems because of language. When I came here I came without English at all,
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 so that, it wasn't easy. //Now it's better, much better, because I can communicate.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 Yeah.
F1205 So for how long would you say that you've learned English? Er, was it three years?
F1206 Er no finally it's the second year at college, //and//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 er because I waited almost a year er and I, before college, the college, I learned just a little at home //myself.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.// So how long do you think that would, if you had to sum up how-, what a what period of time it would be, you learning English, would it be...
F1206 Almo-, yeah, almost three years
F1205 Mmhm mmhm.
F1206 when I move here, yeah. //[laugh]//
F1205 //That's that's very impressive. [laugh]// Er, I think we can, we can move to a more general discussion of the //role of women//
F1206 //Mmhm.//
F1205 and the life of women in Glasgow. And I would like you, [CENSORED: forename] to take part, er now. Erm, the first thing I would like to ask you is er do you think the role of the woman in the family is different, in Scotland to to Poland, and [CENSORED: forename], I would like you to talk about your own experiences,
F1206 Mmhm.
F1205 and [CENSORED: forename], you about your observations.
F1206 Yes, I think it is a little different, er because it's er another culture,
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 er different culture, so mm, in my opinion, Polish women are more traditional.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 The situation in Poland of course has changed er er but still er I think we can observe this er //differences.//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 Er for example at home, mm mm er Polish women cook more.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Er finally we started here to use ready meals.
F1205 Mmhm mmhm.
F1206 Yeah, and er also erm about mm looking after children,
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 er of course in Poland Polish women started to make career,
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 er but mostly they are concentrated to look after the children, //women, not men, still.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 Here er couples' relationships are er more mm equal,
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 I think. It's a partnership.
F1205 Mmhm. What do you think of that, is that true?
M1207 I think yes, it's it's true. I could ask maybe, that [cough] it seems to me that there's not so close relationship between the youngsters and parents here //as it is in Poland.//
F1205 //Mmhm oh yeah, mmhm.// How how did you, ho-how did you observe that, er the relationship between... //In the streets or? Mm.//
M1207 //Er just, maybe// //my friends and and colleagues from the university.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1207 In Poland even if if we have er older friends than the people we st-study with //the parents are the common subject of conversation. Here//
F1205 //Mmhm yeah.//
M1207 no one really mentions the parents.
F1205 Mmhm.
M1207 If I just can think just for now, //only//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
M1207 once my my my colleague from the uni mentioned parents when she said that she was given the car //from from from her mother. That was it.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1207 In Poland people talk more about their parents, so I can guess from that that they have closer relationships. //Also,//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
M1207 when I used to work with the the the working-class people, they are very keen to move out from the parents' house, //even if they're sixteen they quit h-, they quit school,//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1207 leave [inaudible].
F1206 Even on the street I think we can observe the children [inaudible], maybe because here, Glasgow is leave er a big town so //it's a little different but on the street//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 even children er are mm very often impolite, er //very noisy on the bus, that in Poland it's completely different.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.// //Mmhm.//
F1206 //I mm I think in Poland children still have more respect to adults.//
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Of course we have a lot of problems in Poland, but it's a little better.
F1205 Do you think there's a difference between female and male children and their relationships? Wha-, do you think girls maybe are less [inaudible]...?
F1206 I heard that [inaudible] girls here are worse //but, no. [laugh]//
F1205 //[laugh]//
M1207 I was reading in the article that it's... compared to Poland there's much, significantly more crime between the //female youngsters than in Poland.//
F1205 //Uh-huh uh-huh.//
F1206 //Uh-huh.//
F1205 So what do you think about life in the family and er how duties and er chores, how they are distributed? Do you think er children have the same responsibilities, female and male children? Do you think they have any chores to do at all? Erm.
F1206 I think that depends on the family. //Erm... [exhale]//
F1205 //Mmhm.// What about men and women? Erm //you you mentioned cooking.//
F1206 //That, I think that er, erm// Polish model of the family it's still more traditional. It's er, er a role of er of women in the family it's more important.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Er she's responsible for cooking, for cleaning, er for looking after children, er which I mentioned, er er of course that's changed, and also er women erm er do a career. //But er I think still, this role, it's more traditional.//
F1205 //Mmhm.// Do you think that you have changed your attitude here //towards equality,//
F1206 //Mm.// //Not really, I don't know, because er here we started to live together//
F1205 //in that...?// Mmhm.
F1206 so it's different.
F1205 Mmhm. //[laugh]//
F1206 //I don't know. [laugh]//
F1205 You mentioned cooking. Er, have you changed your eating habits //in Glasgow?//
F1206 //Yeah.// //Er yeah, I think er because er we started to use these ready meals.//
F1205 //Yeah? Yeah. [laugh]//
F1206 The life, it's quicker here.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Er yeah but la- er lastly we came back to Polish traditional foods.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 //It's healthier.//
M1207 //I think also//
F1205 Mmhm.
M1207 from the financ- financial reasons, the ready meals are much more affordable //here, while//
F1205 //Yeah, uh-huh.//
M1207 there's not really much choice of the fresh fruits, //it's really poor for vegetables and and some things like that.//
F1205 //That's true. Mmhm.// //Mmhm.//
M1207 //So that could be also a reason why we we change that habit.// But now
F1206 But also about the food that I like very much, the possibility to try a new, completely new //food, er//
F1205 //Mmhm.// //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 //er like Indian, we try that and we love very much.//
F1205 What about erm work, you were talking about your work? But on a more general level, do you think women here have more of an opportunity to work, or is it the same in Poland? //Do you have maybe a better position at work?//
F1206 //So er// here it's I think a little better, I'm not sure very well about er this aspect, this subject.
F1205 Mmhm. //Maybe the place where you work?//
F1206 //Er...//
F1205 Wh- who are the managers?
F1206 Mm er the manager, yeah, it's a man, and the supervisor it's er a girl. //So I don't know.//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 But er mm lastly er er I spoke about, with my friends about er maternity holiday.
F1205 Uh-huh. //Mmhm.//
F1206 //Here it's better, much better than Poland,// because the maternity holiday, leave, it's er longer.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Er and er even when they er, it finished you can receive er benefits here.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 In Poland it's not so easy. //After four months//
F1205 //Mmhm.// //Mmhm.//
F1206 //er you have to come back to work or live at home but without finan-finan-financial support.// //So here it's easier.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm. Okay, yeah.//
M1207 I think there's er much more women are doing the jobs //which are traditionally male jobs, like//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 //Uh-huh.//
M1207 er I I work with the police, there's plenty of female police officers, which is still arriving //in Poland.//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
M1207 There's plenty of lorry drivers //erm//
F1206 //That's true, mmhm.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.//
M1207 //in Poland there's virtually no female lorry drivers, and// bus drivers as well.
F1205 Mmhm.
M1207 So there is a lot of women who do the traditionally male jobs.
F1206 Yeah, in Poland still that is something strange.
F1205 Mmhm. //Mmhm//
M1207 //I think it may be related to, like, [inaudible] reading an article about the female bus driver in in Wrocław.// //And she was only able to start when they introduced the the new buses with power steering and so on, because on old Eastern European buses just it's not good enough for women,//
F1205 //mmhm.// //Mmhm. [laugh] Yeah, yeah.//
M1207 //because you have to be really strong to be able to drive it.// //[cough]//
F1205 //So [CENSORED: forename] do you see erm// when you think about your future here in work, in ed- employment, do you see possibilities and opportunities? D-do you, how do you look at your future?
F1206 Yeah, I hope, mm but er er here at-, I had only three jobs, and it was simple jobs.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Mm but I hope in the future er I will come back to my profession.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Yep.
F1205 So are you not thinking of going back to Poland, do you not, you don't //[inaudible]. Mmhm.//
F1206 //Yes, one day of course, but// or maybe to move to France, it's my dream. //[laugh]//
F1205 //Mmhm [laugh]// Okay, er what about your free time? How how did you spend free time in Poland? What did you do on weekends, evenings?
F1206 Almost the same. Er, go to the cinema. At the beginning it was not easy because I couldn't go to the cinema because of the language, problem with the language. Er but not it's better. Er, only I miss the theatre, //mm because//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 the, of the problem with language, er it's n-, it's still not possible I think for me. Er but a big difference is that here in Scotland young people, or not even young, in general people go to a pub, have a drink.
F1205 Mmhm. //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 //And in Poland very often we organise a party at home.// That is really specific and different. Er and here it's a really important role of a a woman, because er usually it's she she prepares er everything, food, //is a host of a house, so//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 that is completely different. And here in Scotland, we we do both. We go to a pub but er sometimes also we invite people at home.
F1205 Mmhm. //Mmhm.//
F1206 //Even the Scottish friends to show//
M1207 //Or we go [inaudible].//
F1206 how we spend time to have er a pint of porridge beer, for example.
F1205 Mmhm. Yeah, that's true. And what about er the way you dress, has it changed //since you got here?//
F1206 //Yeah, that's// that's, when I came here, at the beginning it was er one of the first things er which I was surprised of, er because the fashion is different I think. Poland it's, the fashion in Poland it's er mostly European style, and here it's American style.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 So girls, er, I think, er mm we're in informal style, //mostly.//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 The style, it's informal, a little more.
F1205 Mmhm.
M1207 As I'm serving myself and some of our friends, the most significant change is that after you start to eat Scottish food you need clothes two sizes //bigger or something,//
F1205 //[laugh]//
F1206 //[laugh]//
M1207 because of this all unhealthy food and lack of of fresh vegetables and so on, //and ready meals and fast foods and so on.//
F1205 //But wh-wh-? Mmhm mmhm mmhm.//
M1207 The the fast food takeaways are so much more affordable than in Poland, so people eat them more and you can see that in your belt. [laugh]
F1205 Mmhm. Would you say, when y-you're in the street, do you think women look different? //Because obviously... not that you look at women all the time, but erm...//
M1207 //Mm yeah.//
F1205 But you must sometimes.
M1207 Yeah, they they look different, the way they they they [inaudible]. I think, if- I'm not a fashion specialist, but I can observe, women here are are, er, it seems to me if if she will see something on a display on the on the high street shop she will go and she will buy the whole set, //you know, from the the top of the head to the bottom,//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1207 and you'll wea-wea-wear here. //In Poland it seems to me the the women have more invention in in creating the the clothes.//
F1205 //Mm. [laugh]// //Uh-huh.//
M1207 //And also// //some some women seems to be er not aware that if something looks good in size eight it will still looks good in size twenty, and they are still wearing that, and I think that's the downside of of looking at the women here.//
F1205 //Mmhm. [laugh]// //Do you think they spend more money on clothes here?//
M1207 //[cough]//
F1206 Yes, I think, //huh.//
M1207 //But also it's cheaper.//
F1206 Yeah.
F1205 Yeah?
F1206 Yeah.
F1205 What about erm on weekend nights? Have you noticed anything special about the way women dress //maybe?//
F1206 //Er,// the style is a little mm more smart,
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 I think.
F1205 Mm.
F1206 Yeah. But about also free time, er I notice that that is also a big difference. Erm women er of the age about forty, fifty, they often go for a pub er to have a drink, and in Poland, it's not like that I think.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Still this er er this role of woman, it's traditional and they stay at home.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 They they can meet friends, but at home. //That...//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 of course sometimes you can meet in a, a woman, [inaudible] er in a pub, but er here it's most popular. //I think.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.// What about erm the way people here look at religion, women, is it, is there something special about religion in Poland that you don't see here? Any religion, really.
F1206 Yeah, that is a little er different here and something new for us, because we met another culture, another religion.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 er like Musl-Musul-, er Muslims.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Er so we don't know exactly very well, mm just a little, and we observe that. But about Christianism, it's similar but I think people here, it's mm more honest. If they go to a a church, //they go. In Poland//
F1205 //Mm.//
F1206 very often they go because of nei-neighbours. //What my neighbour will say?//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 So it's, I think it's better //because they are honest.//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 And if they practice they practice. If not, it's not only for a show //for people.//
F1205 //Mmhm.// Has your life changed, er, your religious life here? Did you...?
F1206 No, the same.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 Yep.
F1205 Okay, maybe erm now about the general erm role in the society and the way women are treated by men, er because they sometimes, European women sometimes comment that they're not let through the doors like they do in Europe. //And//
F1206 //Mmhm.//
F1205 maybe they er they don't get kisses on their hand //when they greet. Have you noticed anything like that?//
F1206 //Mmhm.// //Yeah of course, that is//
F1205 //[inaudible].//
F1206 the this gentlemen, er mm customs er in Poland, er and mm I think it's very nice. And here er relation between a boy and a girl is er more mm partner, //so, yeah.//
F1205 //Mm.//
F1206 Mm.
F1205 Yeah?
F1206 Also er I think er here mm it's mm more freedom about the different er about guys and er mm relationships of the same er
M1207 Sex.
F1206 sex. [laugh] Yes. So er in Poland it's still strange and er in a town it's better but in a village er very often it's a problem.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 So society's more tol-tolerant here.
F1205 Mmhm.
M1207 I think also [?]a separate[/?] position, the, unofficial relatio-, partnerships
F1205 Mmhm.
M1207 are treated here almost the same way like marriages, where in //Poland if//
F1205 //Uh-huh.//
M1207 you are not married you have no rights as a couple.
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 //Mmhm.//
F1205 Do you think women who are in er relationships which are not legal, in Poland they are looked at differently by maybe their neighbours //[inaudible]? Mmhm.//
F1206 //That depends if it's in a village or in a town.//
M1207 //Ah ah.// I was sort of thinking about how the state treats treats //people who are in informal relationships.//
F1205 //Uh-huh uh-huh.// //Mmhm.//
F1206 //Here it's much better.//
M1207 //Here it's, er you've got in every form, you've got 'married' or 'living as married' and no one really care if you had a wedding or not.// In Poland you have to have paper, stamped.
F1206 It's not easy in Poland, really complicated, because if you live in an unmarried couple, and er for example your boyfriend has an accident and is at hospital in Poland, even you can't visit him,
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 cause you are not er his family, so [exhale], that it's... here it's better, much better.
F1205 Mm right, er so how much do you think that your life has changed, the attitudes for instance, to equality? Does that, did you come to Glasgow with this attitude?
F1206 Of course, er each new place er mm chan- change people, er and the new place it's also people, new experiences, //so//
F1205 //Mm.//
F1206 er develops your personality, s-, I think, yeah, I've changed. And er at the beginning it wasn't easy for me because of the language.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 And because new place, er new experience, it's the people.
F1205 Mmhm.
F1206 And even friends, that takes time to make //friends.//
F1205 //Mmhm.//
F1206 And now it's better, much better. And er we can I hope make er profits from living here but also give something, that is the [inaudible] I think. And it's really a gr-great experience. Er we meet new people and new culture, we er mm visit Scotland, which is er really beautiful. So yeah, that's er that create your personality, //so it's a good experience, I think.//
F1205 //Mmhm.// Fantastic. Erm, well the last question is about the Glasgow Women's Library. Erm, have you, are you mm in a way a member of it, because I've learned about you through the Glasgow Women's Library, I got your contact details from them, er from one of the teachers. //Mmhm mmhm.//
F1206 //Erm not yet, but I hope er in the future er we learned about er it a little on the internet, I heard something, I think it's a good idea,// er because that help er women to develop and also it's a great information resource. //So it's a great idea, I think.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.// Do we have places like that in Poland at all?
F1206 Er it's new but er I heard something, yeah, we have in Poland there are gender studies, something like that. [CENSORED: forename] you heard something? //Could you//
M1207 //Mmhm.//
F1206 explain that?
M1207 And they they are making some some research about women's role //in in in the society.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.// //Uh-huh.//
M1207 //So they are at the university and they are [inaudible].//
F1205 Mmhm.
M1207 But also I saw on their website that the Glasgow Women's Library is also to help women with
F1205 Mmhm.
M1207 several problems. And I think in Poland it's quite different because we've got plenty of organisations which are //er [inaudible] focusing on the very narrow field.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.// //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1207 //There's not such a wide [?]street[/?] organisation. It's only created for one or two reasons, to help lonely mothers, or to help foreign women or to help// //with drug problems or the human trafficking so they are always focusing on the very narrow field.//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.// Do you think there are places in Poland where women can meet and be together?
F1206 Mm I think yes but I don't know personally.
F1205 Mmhm. You can't think of any. Okay, that's //fine, er...//
F1206 //Mmhm.//
M1207 I think there's a church for the elderly women.
F1205 //Uh-huh ah yeah.//
F1206 //Church, I think, yeah.//
M1207 And also I've heard that it's er mm because in the, under the previous regime there was very [inaudible] cultural life in the villages, //run by the state, like clubs or the//
F1205 //Mmhm. Mmhm.//
M1207 er how [inaudible] country housewives //or whatever, and that's//
F1205 //Mmhm, yeah.//
F1206 //Mmhm.//
M1207 all disappeared after the transformation, but now it's er, it comes back and it's the women who are responsible for re-re-reviving it, //because it's just a good idea, and women need places to to meet//
F1205 //Mmhm mmhm.// //Mmhm mmhm.//
M1207 //so after twenty years' gap they they restart the meetings of the societies or something.// But that's only from the article I read recently.
F1205 Yeah, fantastic, I think that's it. I think we've finished.

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Information about Document 1684

Interview with two Polish speakers in Glasgow


Audio audience

Adults (18+)
General public
For gender Mixed
Audience size N/A

Audio awareness & spontaneity

Speaker awareness Aware
Degree of spontaneity Spontaneous

Audio footage information

Original title Interview with two Polish speakers in Glasgow
Year of recording 2010
Recording person id 1205
Size (min) 27
Size (mb) 103

Audio setting

Recording venue Glasgow

Audio relationship between recorder/interviewer and speakers

Not previously acquainted
Speakers knew each other Yes

Audio transcription information

Transcriber id 718
Year of transcription 2010
Year material recorded 2010
Word count 3758

Audio type

General description Interview carried out as part of English Language / AUL@W oral history project


Participant details

Participant id 1205


Participant details

Participant id 1206


Participant details

Participant id 1207
Gender Male
Decade of birth 1980