Denmark. Terezin, Czech Republic. 2007-2008.
To the Danes it is a well-known story how the Danish Jews were rescued during World War II. Denmark and the Danes have earned a lot of respect in the world because of this.
But there is another story.
It is about the Jews who were not rescued. About the ones that were sent of to the concentration camp Theresienstadt in the Czech Republic.
This series is an extract from the book “Man kan ikke engang græde” (in English: “You Can’t Even Cry”) about the Danish Jews surviving Theresienstadt and their descendants.
An important factor in the story of this book is identification. When I chose to go back in time it is about creating a link to genocides taking place today. It is easier to understand when the person in the photo could be you, your parents or your grandparents. When 18 year-old Adam, whose father were in concentration camp is sitting in his hoodie and jeans in front of a typical Danish house the story moves a bit closer. Then it could be anyone of us coming from a family with a story like that.
Furthermore the descendants are the living proof that the Nazi plan did not succeed. They document that the deported lived a life.
Terezin, which is the Czech name for the town that used to be Theresienstadt, is difficult to understand. Today it is inhabited. People live their lives in the streets and houses where the Jews were imprisoned during the war.
The photos are of Terezin and not of Theresienstadt. The leap from 1944 to our time is too big, but it is the same stones and walls and knowing the history of the town, they tell a story of their own.
The photos and captions of this story are all extracts from the book.