“What are you up to?” Reading Polish peasants’ memoirs

The material for the presentation will include the diaries of authors born between 1840 and 1905.

I wonder why this is

The diarists paid a lot of attention to Jews

Back in the 1830s literacy was still rare, so a lot of their history died with them. Something I was laughing about earlier is the thought that instead of teaching them how to read they just screwed them out of their farms instead. I obviously don’t laugh about this in the same way that the nastier Zyds probably laugh about it in private. It’s a laughter that arises from “What a POS…” – you get that at all?

Let’s see- one cham named Kazimierz Deczyński kept a journal. And it looks like someone by the name of Leon Kruczkowski wrote a novel based on that a century later. Looks like there’s another serf who wrote during that time named Jura Gajdzica. Just found a recent “People’s history of Poland” written by a Zyd. SKIP.

Symptom from Deczyński?

if you do not redeem the collected goods in three days, they will be sold to the Jews

He refers to his slavers by name, later I’ll have to see if they match up with any of the names in Choinski’s neophyte book. Genealogy can be a slow process. There’s not much to go on, I’m just looking at the earliest possible sources I can find.

A 1925 source

The Jews do not assign more debts than we take, for exchanging money, for waiting, and they have a thousand other ways to siphon off our trifling property by means of borgo (credits) and court execution . If wealthier ones do find themselves, they must pretend to be poor and deliberately borrow from moneylenders for fear of plunder, “and what is worse, rock the friendship of the Jews, courtiers, so that trivial wealth can be hidden. Being under the vices of violence, may we know the name of virtue? … Teach us the bondage of sincerity, mutual help, justice? … We can only crawl before the strong, be vile in begging, deceive the careless, delude the ignorant, and exert cruelty in revenge. Being stripped of our property forces us to demand someone else, a cursed desire incites hatred towards our masters

I just want to know what went on there. It looks like the Polish nobility worked with the Jews to keep the serfs enslaved. Usury and “business” they saw as beneath them so they put the perfect candidates in charge and got a portion of the money extracted.

gave the entire rural population to the Jews for exploitation under contracts, that she leased villages to them with the right of life and death.

Good question

why do not gentlemen give us at least as much grace as the Jews? Why did they let them eat us?

If most of the gentlemen/nobility were crypto-jews would they even have known? Blue eyes, Polish names? If that former slave who visited there is right that they controlled business it could’ve been just like Khazaria where they had the puppet kings.

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