Brief summary

  • Objectives: raising awareness about the inclusiveness of European identity, and promoting social inclusion
  • Target group: young people aged 15-25
  • How: holding exhibitions of photos taken by refugees and local residents and workshops held in high schools on the meaning of the European identity
  • Where: United Kingdom and Sweden

Crossed Paths of Europe is a project aimed at exploring the concept of European identity by inviting refugees and long-term members of the local community to take photos focusing on two main themes: how they see Europe and the things that are important to them. What does Europe mean for locals? What does it mean for refugees? How far apart are these two visions? The photos will be curated to form a public exhibition in both Stockholm (Sweden) and in Edinburgh (United Kingdom), and will be used as a basis of discussion for two workshops on European identity, to be held in high schools in both Stockholm and Edinburgh.

Background

Negative sentiments against refugees are growing across Europe, with refugees being the focus of discriminating narratives and assault. In the United Kingdom, the number of hate crimes has increased considerably following the Brexit referendum according to UK Government statistics. Although not solely targeted at refugees, race-based hate crimes increased by up to 100% in some areas. In Sweden, according to ODIHR data, hate crimes increased during 2016, with xenophobic or racially-motivated crimes making up the largest proportion. Nationalist and xenophobic parties such as the Sweden Democrats have been gaining more and more support, spreading animosity towards refugees. It is in this context that Crossed Paths of Europe sets out to spark a discussion on European identity, to highlight its inclusiveness and its potential to increase the integration of refugees and new Europeans who are building roots in Europe.

Activities

Crossed Paths of Europe is made up of two main components: photography exhibitions, and workshops in schools. The team will provide refugees and European citizens alike with disposable cameras, asking them to take photos representing what Europe means to them, and things which are important to them in their daily lives. The pictures will be curated in an exhibition which will display the lives of both refugees and local residents side by side. The team will organise two exhibitions, one in Stockholm, Sweden, and one in Edinburgh, United Kingdom. Focusing on how the photographers see Europe and the things that are personally important to them, the exhibitions want to spark a discussion about the inclusiveness of the European identity – something which is based on values, not physical appearance. Speakers, politicians, and influencers will be invited to attend the opening event to discuss the meaning of European identity. After the exhibitions, the photographs will be made available on the project website, to maximise the reach of the project to the general public and to gain a broader European dimension. To directly address the main target group, two workshops will be held in secondary schools in Stockholm and Edinburgh to engage 15-18 year old with the project’s focal topics. During the workshops, the students will discuss the topic of European identity and social inclusion with the facilitators and will visit the photography exhibitions.

Team

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From left to right: Kawthar, Emma


Concrete activities

Facebook page
Website
Twitter
Exhibition in Stockholm
Workshop in Stockholm
Exhibition in Edinburgh
Workshop in Edinburgh
Uploading of all photographs to the website
Release of educational material


Calendar of activities

Facebook page – end of February
Website – end of February
Twitter– end of February
Workshop in Edinburgh – 4 May
Exhibition in Edinburgh –  13 – 14 July
Exhibition in Stockholm – 18 June
Exhibition in Stockholm – 28 August – 9 September
Uploading of all photographs to the website – July
Creation of educational material – August


For information on the project please contact us:

e-mail: crossedpathsofeurope@gmail