FALL LECTURE (8/12): ‘THE PUNCTUM AND THE POLITICS OF MIGRANT NARRATIVES’ BY MOIRA INGHILLERI

Co-organized by CETRA (KU Leuven) and Centre for Translating Cultures (University of Exeter)

Wednesday 8 December
4.30 pm Brussels time,
3.30 pm UK time
Online (Microsoft Teams)

Professor Inghilleri’s lecture will consider art forms as modes of translation and instruments of communication that give voice to the experience of migration and displacement. It will examine three different media in which these phenomena are represented: prison writing, painting and photography. The featured works include the groundbreaking book No Friend But the Mountains, Behrouz Boochani’s account of long-term detention in Manus Island, one of Australia’s offshore island prisons, painter Jacob Lawrence’s The Migration Series which documented the migration of African Americans from the southern US to northern and western cities, and photographer Dorothea Lange’s Depression-era photographs of migrant farmworkers taken under the aegis of the US government’s Farm Security Association. Drawing on Barthes’ Camera Lucida (1981), Inghilleri argues that, despite their own challenges of denotation, these art forms avoid some of the problems of signification that arise when migrants’ stories are presented though truncated written or spoken narratives in the context of politicized and bureaucratised procedures.

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