26th Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival
The Origin of Trauma
Keynote speech by Bruce Perry and discussion on dealing with painful experiences
For many psychologists and psychiatrists, childhood trauma is the key to understanding the problems of their clients. Even a seemingly marginal experience can turn into unreflected trauma that plays a fundamental role in shaping our personality. How can society deal with widespread trauma? Can it be prevented? And what can families, schools, and other institutions do better?
Bruce D. Perry, MD, PhD*
Neuroscientist and psychiatrist. Over the last thirty years, Dr. Perry has been an active teacher, clinician and researcher in children’s mental health and neurosciences. His work on the impact of abuse, neglect and trauma on the developing brain has impacted clinical practice, programs and policy across the world. This work has been instrumental in describing how childhood experiences, including neglect and traumatic stress, change the biology of the brain – and, thereby, the health of the child. His most recent book, What Happened to You? Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing, co-authored with Oprah Winfrey, was released in 2021.
Special education expert and chair of the Government Committee on the Rights of the Child. Klára Laurenčíková is an expert guarantor of the children’s mental health agenda at the Ministry of Healthcare. She lectures externally at the Department of Special Education at Charles University, is the founder and chairwoman of the Czech Professional Society for Inclusive Education and co-founder of the Dobrý start initiative, which aims to assist with placing young children from institutions in families. In 2016, she was named an Ashoka Fellow as an advocate for systemic change in the field of inclusive education, thus becoming a part of a global network of social entrepreneurs and innovators. Klára Laurenčíková received an award from the Olga Havel Foundation in 2019 for her work promoting quality and openness in education systems and transforming the system of care for children at risk.
He runs a print shop and serves as a councillor in the village of Halouny, where he lives with his family. At the age of 12, he became the victim of abuse by a Catholic priest and this abuse lasted until he reached adulthood. At the age of 22, he experienced repressed trauma, which took him two years to process and bring under control. He eventually confronted the abusive priest and they worked things out. The topic of abuse in the Catholic Church is being publicized in an effort to create a safe environment. Jiří remained an active Catholic believer and has not given up on the Church or God because he has met with great priests during his life. He is currently the co-chair of Někdo Ti uvěří, a project that helps victims of abuse, not only in the Catholic Church, to find the courage and open up about their story in a confidential setting.
Czech journalist, since 2001 he has been an editor of the Respekt weekly. Petr Třešňák focuses mainly on social and health issues. He is the co-founder and chairman of Naděje pro děti úplňku, an organisation that brings together parents of children with autism spectrum disorders and strives for better and more accessible social services for people with disabilities. In 2014, he won the Journalist Award of the Czech Psychiatric Society for his article "Children of the Full Moon" about children with autism and in the same year he received the Ferdinand Peroutka Prize. The book Zvuky probouzení (Waking Sounds) in which Petr Třešňák and his wife chronicle their experience of raising a daughter with autism, was nominated for the Magnesia Literary Prize in 2021.
*Bruce D. Perry will join us live from the United States.