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Nevena Daković: Images without Memory: trauma, film, transmission

18. March 14:00 - 16:00

ShoahLab: Holocaust Studies Laboratory of the Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory is organizing a talk on the book „Images without Memory: Trauma, film, transmission“ by professor Nevena Daković (Faculty of Dramatic Arts Belgrade, 2020).

We will discuss the intertwining of memories and trauma in the representation of the Holocaust and other genocides and war crimes in film art, as well as the specifics of the film genre which takes traumatic memories as its theme. Some of the questions we will raise are: how does film art frame and rethink the roles of victim, perpetrator, and witness; how history is (re)presented and in film discourse; and how memory as trauma is transmitted and shaped through art.

The title of the book 'Images without Memory', suggests the reversal of the common thesis that the Holocaust – as the civilizational breakdown that cannot be re-presented – is 'an event without a witness' (Felman & Laub, 1992), bearing ethical and traumatic contrains of representation. Quite to the contrary, chosen cinematic images are based upon the notion that trauma can never be accomodated; it always stays as an unaccomodated memory, such that it, at best, resurfaces through detached images and without pertaining to be tacit memory [...] Every individual and new generation 'stitches in' new cinematic images and memory references. The intricate analytical and interpretational process through which we give memory to the traumatic moving images indicates compartmentalisation of memories in diverse ways, as well as linking them and inserting them in the chain of trauma transmission and thus reshape them in diverse (cultural) memory texts ('Diary of Diana Budisavljević', Ujvidek Raid/Novosadska racija). The subtitle 'trauma, film, transmission' defines the focal topic of cinematic transmission of trauma more precisely. By covering a period of almost eighty years – from the first shots of the mass killing of Jews in the east (1941) to more recent films ('Load'/'Teret', O. Glavonić, 2018) and TV series ('Hunters', 2019, 2020) – the book reveals how trauma is conveyed to different post generations.


  • dr Nevena Daković, author, full professor, Faculty of Dramatic Arts, University of Arts in Belgrade
  • dr Dragana Stojanović, assisatant professor, Faculty of Media and Communications, Singidunum University
  • dr Aleksandra Kolaković, research fellow, Institute for Political Studies
  • Ivan Velisavljević, PhD student, Faculty of Dramatic Arts, University of Arts in Belgrade
  • dr Predrag Krstić, research fellow, Institute for Philosphy and Social Theory, University of Belgrade


18. March
14:00 - 16:00