Posts Tagged 'Liverpool'

Conference in Pictures

Images from the Conference

We’ve been busy taking pictures at the Intercultural Cities conference. Some of the best are on Flickr here:
http://flickr.com/photos/tenantspin/sets/72157604828236487/

If you also have pictures to share, please upload them to flickr.com and tag them with “interculturalcities” and other relevant tags. Enjoy!

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KENSINGTON RENEGERATION TOUR

The tour Itinerary at the Inter-cultural Cities Conference

Saturday, 3rd May 2008: visit around
Kensington, starting 10.00am

More info on Kensington Regeneration is available at
http://www.kensingtonregeneration.com/

10.00am. Convene at St. Georges Hall, North Entrance & leave in Minibus for Kensington The bus will have two distinct groups going to Kensington, some going to a) METAL in Marmaduke Street; and the rest going on b) Kensington Magical Mystery Tour to end up at the Hindu Cultural Organisation at 10.45pm for our hour’s meeting there on Kensington.

We will first pass Edge Hill Railway Station to show all delegates where the Liverpool Pavillions Festival will take place from 12 noon to 6.0pm the same day with our Kensington Czech Slovak Roma Band playing at 5.30pm
Continue reading ‘KENSINGTON RENEGERATION TOUR’

‘Contacting the World’ comes to Liverpool

This summer Liverpool, Europe’s Capital of Culture for 2008, will showcase the outcome of an unusual theatre twinning scheme that brings together teenagers from across the world.

Since 2002 European theatre companies have been twinning with counterparts in other parts of the world, in a project that encourages young people aged 15-25 to explore each other’s lives through performance.

Aaron Cunningham, a young artist from Manchester’s Contact Theatre Company, described to DiverCities his experience of an exchange with Afro-Reggae, a theatre group based in Rio de Janeiro which sought to offer young people an alternative to the attentions of the police or the gangs.

“Through Afro-Reggae young people living in the favellas (shantytowns) got the chance to visit places outside their favella, read their poetry to people elsewhere and even got to other shanty towns,” he said. “It was a real eye-opener for me.”

Meanwhile back in Manchester youngsters use improvisation to dramatise stories based on random items and actions.

Both groups have sent each other CDs of their favourite music tracks, with explanations about what makes them so special.

The two groups also swapped boxes of artefacts associated with their lives. Aaron sent a piece of marble given to him by his grandmother just before she died. He was unaware that a Brazilian girl had sent to Manchester a large smooth, egg-shaped stone her father had plucked from the sea two days before he died. For her it contained his spirit and she hoped he would bless her friends in England. The Contact Theatre group have developed a play around her story.

It is these kinds of connections that make the project such a remarkable method of connecting young people who might never get to meet although they do use Facebook too.

All of which promises to make the final festival of fun very special indeed.

For more information see www.contactingtheworld.org
Or contact Julia Turpin (Project Director): +44 (0161) 274 0631

FROM MULTICULTURALISM TO INTER-CULTURALISM

Conversations at the conference with Sir Bob Scott

“Multiculturalism is important insofar as it breeds sympathy and a sense of belonging and welcome – so everyone is respected with their own background.

“We encourage the building of mosques and temples, for example, so you don’t lose your character by being in this country. We also expect you to obey UK law but we are keen to encourage the notion of people living under one roof.

“But it has also led to the creation of ghettoes. In one northern city, for example, 20,000 people from North India and Pakistan all live close together in one area. So there is a problem for the second generation living a terrible double life – with their parents who may not have learned English and going to an English speaking school. So they live a very difficult life…

So inter-culturalism has become more important – because people feel they can genuinely participate in every conceivable way and become British first without losing their Indian identity

Something like 50 percent of the population of Liverpool claim an Irish background – so we have always had the notion of Liverpool Irish. And like any big port, we have small but well-established maritime communities of sailors and merchant seamen from China, Somalia and Sri Lanka as well as Italy and Spain, for instance. So we have always seen ourselves as ‘the world in one city’.

Liverpool has great cathedrals and one of the great synagogues in the country. In 2004 we had a faith community year with Christians, Hindus, Muslims and Jews all working together and participating in their own ways.

We’re trying to develop inter-culturalism here without it being painful or unnatural. The worse thing we can do is make such an effort of political correctness that people get very put off by it.

What we believe passionately is that what leads to riots and real unhappiness is a multi-culturalism that leads to real ghettoes. We need inter-culturalism that develops respect for other cultures – living cultures talking to each other.”

Images from Intercultural Cities

Brian Cross (brian@artimedia.org.uk) has been busily taking photgraphs of the first day of the Intercultural Cities Conference. We have been uploading them throughout the day to flickr and will continue to do so as the conference progresses to see these images click here.

Interculturalism: Thoughts from Session 1

Five very good presentations and no time for questions. That is the problem of too many conferences. Where are the timekeepers?

Nonetheless, here are the ideas from the first two presentations that intrigued me that I hope to find time to follow on with panelists this afternoon…

The civic is made out of the work of overcoming difference without weaponry. – Saskia Sassen

We must be able to invent new instruments to deal with difference and in their making we will be inventing the new civic. – Sassen

Concerns about national security and national unity have merged into one and spawned the question of who belongs? – Ash Amin

It is unrealistic to expect us to “know our neighbor” and much more so to “love our neighbor.” The best we can hope for is “thrown togetherness” or “tacit publicness.” Chess between strangers in public spaces is a good example of this and it produces “studied trust.” If we want to deal with interculturalism productively, it is critical to repopulate public spaces.” Bazaars and community gardens are examples. Urbanism with a light touch is called for. Urban conviviality should be the ambition rather than the necessity of empathy. There are simply limits to how much interpersonal contact we can expect. – Amin


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