Thursday, 22 May 2014

Photographic exhibition at Keele for Refugee week, 16-22 June

Siobhan Holohan and Ala Sirriyeh, along with colleagues from Humanities, have been organising a photographic exhibition for Refugee Week (16-22 June). Refugee Week is a UK-wide festival of arts, cultural and educational events to celebrate the contribution of refugees to the UK and to encourage greater understanding of refugee experiences. The importance and benefits of sanctuary to both ‘host’ communities and refugees is persistently questioned by hostile media coverage. Keele University values and promotes a culture of welcome, and this year, for the first time, Keele joins Refugee Week and its profusion of activities taking place across the country from 16th till 22nd June. Keele campus will host a week-long photographic exhibition which aims to capture the different stages of displaced lives in search of sanctuary. From routes to home, the images will chart the difficult and challenging – often unsuccessful – journeys to safety. The pictures represent original work collected by sociologist Dr Ala Sirriyeh (Keele) and anthropologist Sebastien Bachelet (Edinburgh) during their field research in the UK and Morocco, respectively.

Refugee Week at Keele will open officially on 16th June with a wine reception in the Claus Moser building at 5.30 pm. The launch aims to gather together senior representatives of the university, academic staff, students, as well as members of the community to celebrate the history, the present and the future of refugees in the UK. This opening event will also feature a 15 minutes music performance by Dr Kelcey Swain (Bristol); for this occasion Kelcey has composed an electroacoustic piece which aims to conjure up ideas of displacement , uprooting, dislocation, yearning to belong. Music and images brought to Keele University for Refugee Week will engage the audience in contemporary refugee matters and will also offer alternative portrayals of migrants – not just victims, but actively involved in shaping their future. Come along, spread the word, and join us for Refugee Week at Keele!

Organising committee: Rachel Bright, Siobhan Holohan, Mariangela Palladino, Ala Sirriyeh.
For further information, please contact one of the organisers by email:;;;

More happening for Keele Refugee Week:
Keele University Creative Writing Students and the KPA (Keele Postgraduate Association) will host
Open mic poetry and music on seeking sanctuary and human displacement.   This will take place at the KPA, Keele University Campus, on 9th June at 6pm.  Contact Patrick Atack:

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