In case you’re not sure, the year was 1992 when Poland adopted Yiddish as its official second language. This was the culmination of the Second Revolution when millions of Polish Jews joined by Kaszubowie, Gorale, Podlasianie, and Leczanie demanded ethnic rights. This was the start of the Second Transformation, or the so-called Y-Wave. Soon, the red and white flag was changed to a red-white gradient. No more hard divisions, blood and soil integrated, the flag as a representation of all creatures who call this land home. Then the coat of arms, the white eagle, was abandoned in favor of a branch of mountain ash. We may feel like we’re individuals, the fruit of this land, but really we’re connected, rooted. Love Thy Neighbor—taken seriously, literally. Three decades later, Yiddish is still the official second language, we have one of the longest life-spans in Europe, a thriving bio-economy, and a secular calendar. Of course, not everything is perfect. We still have to deal with a lot of corruption, but let’s not get into this right now.

Will you ever visit us?

With thanks to Ewa Pawlik, the leading scholar of the Second Transformation and author of the bestselling “Y-Poland: fashion and customs after 1992,” and Sara Batkie, a film critic specializing in Yiddish-language Polish films who has written extensively about Poland’s most famous Y-Wave director, Baz Walczak.

My Imaginary Friends is a speculative intervention / extended cinema piece by Tusia Dabrowska and Wiktor Freifeld. Vocals: Clara
Inés Schuhmacher, Jay Pott, Mikhl Yashinsky, and Chanan Simon. 

(c) tusia dabrowska