What a foreigner should not talk about
The paper discusses communicative competence of non-native speakers and students of Polish in respect to taboo in Polish, and reports on a study of textbooks for learning Polish from the 19th and the 20th centuries. The range of topics in earlier textbooks is considerably wider than that in contemporary ones; they more often touch on topics that are now considered taboo and that are often not covered by contemporary textbooks. These topics relate to: death, illnesses (other than common cold or toothache), names of sexual body parts, and related, sexual activities, and religious beliefs. There are only few most recent textbooks that include lexical items relating to such topics, while the most frequent and basic items can be found in the Polish dictionaries.