Michal Palacz on the Polish Medical Diaspora in Edinburgh

Thank you to today’s speaker, University of Edinburgh fourth year doctoral student Michal Palacz, for an informative and really interesting paper. Michal’s thesis looks at the Polish Medical Diaspora in Edinburgh, 1941-1949, and though this paper made reference to the three major waves of Polish emigration to Britain (1830s, Wartime, and Post-EU Accession Migration), it focused on the c. 1000 Polish-born (or of Polish-origin) medical professionals in Scotland during the 1940s. One of the medical professionals who made up this diaspora was Dr Krystyna Munk who had been awarded a medal for bravery while serving as a ship’s doctor during World War Two (when Polish military personnel joined with British and other Allied forces) – she later became a much-loved GP in Edinburgh. This was just one example of Michal’s ability to mix theory with personal anecdotes, making for a fascinating paper.

The plaque currently on one of the walls in the University of Edinburgh (Old) Medical School which remembers the Polish Medical School.

The plaque currently on one of the walls in the University of Edinburgh (Old) Medical School which remembers the Polish Medical School.

Our next speaker shall be Ching-An Chang from IMES. He shall be speaking on Syrian business refugees in Turkey in the aftermath of the recent civil war. Please join us on 28th October at 1pm in room G14, Doorway 4, Old Medical School, University of Edinburgh.

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Catriona Taylor: SCDS Artist Reports Back on Residency

Today’s seminar was a great success. Catriona Taylor gave us a fascinating talk on the results of her time as the Scottish Centre of Diaspora Studies’ artist in residence. This included two short films entitled ‘Am I an Immigrant?’ and ‘Flow’ which both looked at personal, and wider, interpretations of diasporic terminology.The final piece that Catriona showed us was a quilt made up of images, stories and material which represented ‘home’ to migrants currently living in Scotland.

Catriona Taylor with the finished "Home" quilt.

Catriona Taylor with the finished “Home” quilt.

Our next seminar will be held on 14th October in G14 of the William Robertson Wing at 1pm. The speaker will be Michal Palacz speaking on The Polish medical diaspora in Scotland during and after the Second World War. Please feel free to join us.