This study compares native English publications with non-native English publications. Specifically, publications have been compared of Anglophone and Polish scholars in the past two decades. Various stylistic and linguistic characteristics and several textual levels are assessed by applying Kaplan's (1966) Contrastive Rhetoric Analysis. Results show that differences exist at the paragraph level and not at the sentence or textual level. Native texts have a higher degree of reciprocity (reader-friendliness) and are more linear. Results reveal that Polish authors write academic English with traces of a Teutonic style but as far as reciprocity is concerned they are moving towards the stylistic features of native English; newer publications by the Polish authors are more reader-friendly than the older ones. Native speakers are not able to reliably recognise native and non-native sentences and often mistake non-native writings for native writing, and in many cases they even label native sentences as non-native. These findings put into perspective the aims applied in teaching academic language.