What do you know about China?

Martyna and Mateusz, by profession “Trip Architects”, privately travellers and lovers of other cultures, will show that China is not only The Great Wall of China and Xi’an, but it is also a dynamically changing country, which some time ago gave up on the Communist patterns and centrally planned economy.

On 2nd of April we landed in Beijing and we started a one-and-a-half month trip around China, showing it from the perspective of Poles who live there. We want to present China in a different way than it is presented in the Polish media, where the image is rather negative. We do not want to “glorify” it and show only the positive aspects, but we wish to portray it as an ordinary country and people who simply aspire to a peaceful and prosperous life. We decided that the best will be to represent the opinions and views of people who have been connected to China for a long time and who got to know the life there from different perspectives – studies, work and family life.

Why China? – the beginning of the journey

While searching for information about the country, we discovered that in the North there is the city of Harbin, founded by our compatriot, Andrzej Szydłowski, at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. In the past, several thousand Polish people lived in that city, there were Polish schools, kindergartens, clubs and even Polish newspapers were printed. Today, there is only a Polish cemetery, but Polish students often come here for exchange.

We followed this track and we discovered what we want to know and in what way we want to present China: in Polish! We show how people live and function in Chinese everyday life from the perspective of the Poles, who live there, both permanently and temporarily. We interview and speak to Polish people working and living in China and we make reports. In Beijing and Shanghai we met the Polish representatives who live there and we heard unique opinions about the life in the metropolis, where the population is bigger than the total number of the inhabitants of our country. We ourselves live at Polish emigrants’ and Chinese people’s house, and thanks to that we get to know their perception of China and of the changes taking place in this country, and we also find out what they think and know about Poland. The whole thing is an incredibly instructive and interesting mixture, which we share with the world on our project’s webpage: www.chinypopolsku.pl .


Photos © Martyna Nowicka & Mateusz Paprocki


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