Does the war have a woman's face? Meeting with the authors of the book "Przetrwałam” (I survived)

Does the war have a woman’s face?

The authors of the book “Przetrwałam” published by Dom Spotkań z Historią (the House of Meetings with History) tried to deal with this question. Sybir Memorial Museum hosted Katarzyna Madoń-Mitzner and Maria Buko, who talked about their experiences with spoken history and work on the project, which resulted in an extraordinary collection of 15 reports of women imprisoned in German camps, Soviet camps and communist prisons in post-war Poland. The characters described by them presented their experiences in the face of totalitarianism, they talked about their entering into adulthood (most of the heroines in the moment of arrest were less than 20 years old) and the trauma of crossing the taboo of shame. They described the tragic fate of their families and their return to the "post-war world." The listeners sitting in the room let themselves be carried away by the touching words of the prisoners, recalled by aloud reading. Everyone had the impression that the stories of women, despite the enormous tragedy of fate, have their positive undertone. In spite of everything, the heroines survived and managed to live with the trauma of prison, giving a testimony of huge humanity and exceptional fortitude.

Photos: Władysław Tokarski

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