Andrew W. Mellon Lecture in the Humanities
The Refugee Crisis: Crossing, Cutting and Burning the Mediterranean Seametery
In recent years, migrants and refugees have undertaken clandestine movements from the Middle East and Africa across the Mediterranean Sea to Europe. In this talk, Hakim Abderrezak discusses these sea crossings and what he terms “the so-called ‘refugee crisis’” to interrogate the terminology individuals and scholars use to examine this human tragedy. To do so, Abderrezak turns his attention to the lexicon used by people who have actually experienced the perils of attempted maritime passage to refer to themselves and their journeys. He also explores the narratives that writers, filmmakers, and painters have proposed as alternatives to the stigmatizing language that permeates the media’s treatment of the “refugee crisis” and the political discourse it has partly inspired.