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Our Interface commission members take part in the online conference; MIGRANT BELONGINGS. Over 200+ speakers have confirmed their participation to the conference. A registration link for the general audiences has now also been published (closes on April 15).

For more information and updates keep an eye on the website: We are tweeting about the conference under the hashtag #migrantbelongings.

5 stellar keynotes scheduled and confirmed, more info here:

Confirmed keynotes:

  • Paul Gilroy (University College London)

  • Engin Isin (Queen Mary, University of London)

  • Nicholas de Genova (University of Houston)

  • Larissa Hjorth (RMIT University, Melbourne)

  • Saskia Witteborn (Chinese University of Hong Kong)

Next to the ‘regular’ academic programme there will be special screenings, Q&As with media makers, roundtables and the ECREA DMM paper award ceremony, as well as interactive sessions where you can playfully meet each other through the platform Gather.Town.

Special Programme:

Wednesday 21 at 19.30

Screening of Bab Sebta France, Morocco / Colour / 2019 / 19’ and Q&As with filmmaker Randa Maroufi

Session chaired by Irene Gutierrez, PhD Researcher & Filmmaker REEL Borders.

Bab Sebta (FIDLab 2018) is the Arabic name of Ceuta, a Spanish enclave in Morocco, opposite Spain. Literally, it means “the door of Ceuta”. When you go through that door, you enter Europe. Director Randa Maroufi focuses on the parallel economy and the power struggles that occur in this geographic oddity. The action? Small cross-border exchanges of all kinds, more or less legal. The setting? A frontier represented by a flat, ostensibly theatrical surface, with lines on the floor to mark out various functions and areas, whose grey tones are evocative of the blank surface of a schoolboard waiting to be written on. And as a medium, Maroufi chooses a slow ballet and its rituals, shown from a double viewpoint: on the ground, on a human scale; and from above, like the gaze of a cartographer, structuring spaces, indicating administrative and practical distributions, like a surveillance helicopter. The camera goes from one viewpoint to another. The shots linger on never-ending lines of people who are busy fixing colourful bulging bundles, hiding food, or going through checkpoints. It is an endless stream of biscuits, electrical appliances, folded, rolled or piled up clothes, among all sorts of goods. We follow each and every movement of all these different events happening in the very same spot, like in a teeming fresco. This rigorous choreography of bodies, of individual and collective gestures, is enriched off screen by the diffracted tales of smugglers or customs officers, and by police announcements about trafficking, stunts and tricks, and all their unspoken tragedies. This reenactment, involving real smugglers, becomes an epic of sorts, which thwarts the foam and allows us to see an inhabited geopolitical cartography. (N.F.)

Presentation of the ‘REEL BORDERS’ ERC Starting Grant project by Kevin Smets, Vrije Universiteit Brussels with Irene Gutierrez, PhD Researcher & Filmmaker

Thursday 22 at 19.30

Insights on the Utrecht context of living and researching media and migration, in Covid times.

Issa Shaker is an independent filmmaker with a passion for breathing life into untold stories. He coaches up-and-coming journalists and online personalities. Organizations that Issa has served with his media productions include the BBC, Al Jazeera, Russia Today, RNW Media, University of Vienna and University of Wolverhampton

Introduction to De Voorkamer by representative, In 2016 De Voorkamer opened its doors in Utrecht, creating a cultural meeting space to promote inclusion and integration by stimulating and facilitating the talents of our diverse community.

Session chaired by Dr. Rick Dolphijn, Utrecht University

Conference Team:

Sandra Ponzanesi

Koen Leurs

Frederik Kohler

Julia de Lange

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