Holocaust Documentary Maker in School

Published 1 February 2024

Documentary maker and reporter, Mirek Gosney, joined us at St Bart’s last week as part of our Beacon School programme of activities around Holocaust Memorial Day.

Speaking to our Year 12s during their enrichment session, Mirek described his recent documentary, ‘Building Hitler’s Empire’, which delves into the true story of the Nazis’ forgotten forced and slave labour programme. The documentary considers the perspective of Mirek’s own Czech great-grandfather, Miroslav Jeřábek, who was conscripted and sent to work in Germany. Mirek spoke to our students about economic exploitation, often involving global corporations, and about the difference between slave labour and forced labour, which offered some pay and freedom. He also explored the theme of forgotten voices, justice and recognition and whether you can ever truly compensate for some experiences.

Mirek also shared his experience of the making of documentaries and his reflections on his research and decision to remain a neutral voice. Following the talk, Mirek answered questions from our students and spent time sharing advice with those interested in journalism and film and documentary making.

Our thanks to Mirek for giving his time and sharing his story.