Led by: Łukasz Wojtusik
None of the heroes of this book knew what would await them when they first decided to help refugees. They didn’t know that they would be forced to hide, not only from the state services but also their neighbors; that helping other people would bring the most sense to their lives but also would take away their peace, family lives, sometimes their jobs, and that it would leave an indelible emotional mark on them. Meanwhile, the Polish state still cannot handle the humanitarian crisis on the Belarussian border and chooses forceful solutions instead of systemic ones. The consequence is several dozen victims that we know of and hundreds that we will know of in the future.
The people, the voices of which are presented in this book, took responsibility for the sphere which was abandoned by the state. Today, they are persecuted. In the future, they will be yet another fig leaf in the history of Poland. Those who believe in God, honor, and motherland, will be the ones who will brag about helping refugees in the future. In order to forget about the shame of Polish authorities, there will be statues built of those who are helping today, but it will be already too late.
Mikołaj Grynberg – writer and photographer, psychologist. Author of photography albums “Dużo kobiet” (2009) and “Auschwitz – co ja tu robię?” (2010). His photographs were presented all over the world. He published collections of interviews with Holocaust Survivors: “Ocaleni z XX wieku” (2012), “Oskarżam Auschwitz. Opowieści rodzinne” (2014), and “Księga wyjścia” (2018) and two volumes of short stories, “Rejwach” (2017) which was nominated to the Nike Literary Prize and the Angelus Central European Literature Award, while its American publication translated by Sean Gaspar Bye was selected to the finale of the National Jewish Book Awards 2022 and is nominated to The Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature, and “Poufne” (2020). In 2021, he debuted as a film director with a documentary titled “Dowód tożsamości” which was produced by the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews. For years, he has been focusing on the history of Polish Jews in the 20th century, asking himself and his interviewees questions on how it is to be Jewish in Poland and what does it really mean. For a few years now, he has been leading workshops in writing personal stories.
Partner: Wydawnictwo Agora
In Polish. Free admission.