Date: 23 Sept 2016
Speaker: Antoine Cassar
A generation after the fall of the Berlin Wall, physical barriers between nation states are going up faster than they are coming down. By attempting to keep danger out, governments create a more dangerous world for people forced to migrate. But borders also exist within states, in the form of bureaucracy and discrimination; according to migration academic Joanna Tsoni (Univ. of Malmö), refugees navigating their way through Europe unwittingly carry the border on their skin. How can poetry - often seen as vapid, abstract and self-serving - resist and overcome the very physical effects of nation-state borders? In this talk, we'll explore how voice, rhythm and metaphor can help to break through the barriers of fear.
Antoine Cassar is a Maltese poet, translator, cultural organiser, and a creative activist for migrants’ rights and universal freedom of movement. His iconic work ‘Passport’, published in the form of an anti-passport for all peoples and all landscapes, has been published in 10 languages, and adapted for the stage in Malta, Italy, France, Belgium and Australia. Proceeds from the sale of the ‘Passport’ are donated to grassroots organisations that provide direct support to refugees in the community.