PANELLIST

Witold Szabłowski

Journalist, Author of the book The Assassin from Apricot City
Warsaw

Witold Szabłowski is a Polish journalist, lived and studied for years in Turkey, and much of his journalism has engaged with Turkish issues. He is a graduate of the Department of Journalism and Political Science at Warsaw University. He won the 2007 Melchior Wańkowicz Award in the category of Inspiration of the Year for his honest documentation of aspects of Turkish society not widely known outside of the country. He is known for his concise but vivid use of language. In 2008 he received an honorable mention from Amnesty International for his report on Turkish honor killings, To z miłości, siostro ("It's Out of Love, Sister"), which appeared in Duży Format. He wrote about the situation of women in Turkey who were subjected to rape and honor killing for the "sin" of wanting to decide their own fates. Zabójca z miasta moreli ("The Assassin from Apricot City"), a collection of his long-form journalism, was published in Poland in 2010. It won the Beata Pawlak Award and was nominated for the Poland's NIKE book award. After a journey to Cuba, he wondered if something important had been lost in the change from communism to capitalism. He and his wife, Izabela Meyza, decided to live for the year of 2012 as if they were in Communist times. They wore clothes from Communist times, refrained from buying things not available in the Polish People's Republic, and sought out games and objects from the Communist era. Together they wrote a book about their experiences, Nasz mały PRL. Pół roku w M-3, z trwałą, wąsami i maluchem ("Our Little Polish People's Republic: Six Months in a Three-room Apartment with a Perm, a Moustache, and a Fiat 126p”) In 2014 he published Tańczące niedźwiedzie ("Dancing Bears") in which he writes about the creation of reserves for bears previously used as dancing bears to entertain people. He uses the experiences of the former dancing bears to explore differences between communist and capitalist systems. In 2016 Szablowski’s book Sprawiedliwi zdrajcy. Sąsiedzi z Wołynia (“Righteous Traitors. Neighbors from Volhynia”) was published. It depicts the fate of the victims and witnesses of the 1943-1944 massacres of Poles in Volhynia. Szabłowski’s main focus is on people who at great personal risk provided help to their neighbors, Polish or Jewish. It is considered some of the best reporting of the massacres of Poles in Volhynia.
 
 

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