Being humane

Posted by ap507 at Jul 09, 2018 11:31 AM |
Academics, poets, activists and members of the public discuss responses to migration crisis

Issued by University of Leicester on 9 July

  • University of Leicester organises event at Leicester Cathedral on Friday 13 July at 6.30pm

Humane responses to the ‘migration crisis’ are to be explored at an event organised by a University of Leicester academic at Leicester Cathedral.

A panel of academics, poets and activists will be discussing artistic and civil society responses to migration and what needs to be done for countries in Europe to develop more humane responses to the crisis.

Titled "The Migrant and Refugee Crisis: Artistic and Civil Society responses," the panel event is free and open to all and will take place at Leicester Cathedral on 13 July 2018, starting at 6.30pm.

Speaking at the event are:

● Pierre Monforte (University of Leicester, Media, Communication and Sociology)

● Gaja Maestri (University of Leicester, Media, Communication and Sociology);

● Sandra Dudley (University of Leicester, Museum Studies);

● poet, editor and book reviewer, Emma Lee; and

● poet, multimedia journalist, and events organiser, Ambrose Musiyiwa.

The event has been organised by Dr Maria Rovisco (University of Leicester, Media, Communication and Sociology).

The presentations by panellists will be followed by a discussion and question and answer session with those present.

The panel event is part of the programme of events that are taking place at Leicester Cathedral in response to the plight of people who are looking for refuge, beginning with the hanging of 'Suspended', the startling and internationally-acclaimed artwork created by Arabella Dorman and supported by the University of Leicester.

The panel event is organised by the University of Leicester's School of Media, Communication and Sociology in association with the Leicester Migration Network and the University of Sanctuary initiative.

Dr Maria Rovisco said: "The 'migrant and refugee crisis' as an event that began in 2015 is not over. More than 1000 people died trying to cross the Mediterranean in 2017 as international agencies, grassroots initiatives of local residents and NGOs battled to save lives and assist with the reception and integration of refugees.

"While media coverage of the crisis suggests that European Union and individual Member States are unable to develop more than piecemeal responses to the ongoing deadly migrant and refugee crisis, the role of civil society actors who assist with refugee reception and resettlement has attracted much less media attention.

"Artistic responses to the European migration crisis gained momentum in 2016. From Ai Weiwei’s high profile Berlin installation, which covered a Berlin landmark with thousands of life jackets used by people seeking asylum, to artistic interventions such as participatory arts workshops in refugee camps and fundraising arts projects, many artists are embracing agendas for justice and social change that extend beyond the arts. Yet, we know little about what is driving civil society actors and artists to engage with the plight of refugees.

"Against the backdrop of Arabella Dorman’s ‘Suspended’, this panel discussion invites activists, poets, academics and the general public to look at how can we build more hospitable and welcoming societies for those seeking refuge on the European continent."

The Very Revd David Monteith, Dean of Leicester, said: “Our hope in hosting ‘Suspended’ is to not only create conversation about the migrant crisis but also to encouragement engagement.  As I receive, process and react to hearing directly from the displaced and through coming close to their clothing, I have been changed.  Perhaps they teach us much of what it might mean to be fully human in this world in the 21st century.”

You can register to attend at



1. For more information, contact Dr Maria Rovisco on

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