David Sladek

Photographer, journalist
   
Unspoken Genocide - book about survivors of WW2 genocide
Location: Surrey, UK
Nationality: Czech
Biography: David Sládek is Czech independent photojournalist living in London and a former reporter for the Czech News Agency. Since moving to London more than a decade ago he has been focusing his photographic work on life of minorities and... read on
Books News
Unspoken Genocide - book about survivors of WW2 genocide
david sladek
Nov 3, 2019
Location: Jasenovac
Nightmares, family secrets and decades of pain – such is the legacy of war to those who survived it. A lesser known chapter of World War 2 left a permanent mark on post war lives of Serbs, Jews and Roma who managed to see the end of the clero-fascist rage in the Independent State of Croatia. Unimaginable horrors are still vivid in their memories despite all the attempts to suppress them. Some of the stories were never told in full for personal reasons, but some were swept under the carpet by Tito's policy of Unity and Brotherhood which aimed to equalize all nations of the new Yugoslavia (including the two main sides of the genocide). Twenty survivors speak of their childhood amidst murders and concentration camps in a new book Unspoken Genocide released by an independent journalist and photographer David Sladek in April 2017.

“I saw a grown man cry every time he spoke the word ‘majka’ (mama). I met a war orphan who has not drank liquids since WW2 after being almost starved to death in children’s concentration camp. And I witnessed immeasurable strength of another survivor who spent her life helping others while carrying a memory of Ustasha skinning a man alive in front of her. All this within two years from the first time I learned of the despicable genocide in WW2 Croatia. But what really stroke me from the beginning was the fact that they – the survivors – could not – for personal or political reasons – speak about their nightmares after the war ended as if they were punished for surviving,” says Sladek.

Unspoken Genocide is a collection of images and interviews completed during a two year period in the Balkans – mainly Bosnia (Banja Luka) and Serbia (Belgrade). It doesn't aim to serve photography critics as a source of countless speculations but to set the viewer straight into the emotions of people behind the stories. “Memories and pain of genocide survivors must not be suppressed by politics or encoded into a complicated artistic language – as if it wasn't enough that today’s world is so foreign to their generation.” The photographer - in Sladek’s case - is merely a medium to convey the message which is plain and simple. For it is the inability to speak about the memories that is at the focus the book.

Hardcover: 152 pages
Publisher: David Sladek
Language: English / Serbian
Print: PBTisk, CZ
ISBN: 978-80-270-1038-7

Unspoken Genocide: Amazon.co.uk: David Sladek: 9788027010387: Books
Buy Unspoken Genocide Bilingual edition by David Sladek (ISBN: 9788027010387) from Amazon's Book Store. Everyday low prices and free delivery on eligible orders.
438