Mapping Diaspora; New Understandings of Space, Place, and People on the Move
Leiterin: Madeline Bass, Institut für Englische Philologie, Freie Universität Berlin; Institutionelle Anbindung der X-Student Research Group: Institut für Englische Philologie, Freie Universität Berlin
Funding period: april 2020 – september 2021
This course was for students who wanted to develop innovative strategies for understanding migration and diaspora experiences in Berlin. Community maps, collaborative art, collective autoethnography, and participatory methods function alongside statistical models, demographics, discourse analysis, and more traditional approaches in the project work. Students were encouraged to connect personal and academic backgrounds to their coursework. They identifes partner communities, built methodological frames modelled around these groups, and pursued a project that is locally focused, innovative, and empowering. Students integrated a sociopolitical practice by engaging with Berlin-based creatives, activists, and diaspora archives. tsudent interestes in specific ethnic or religious communities, as well as those focused on more general topics like im/migration, cultural studies, and heritage participated in the course.
Publication: "The borderline" von Meri Melkonyan
The X-Student Research Group offered summer semester 2021 at Freie Universität Berlin “Mapping Diaspora; New Understandings of Space, Place, and People on the Move” lead by Madeline Bass investigated the migration and diaspora experiences in Berlin. Alongside more traditional approaches the students were encouraged to learn and use new methods of conducting sociological research, such as community maps and collaborative art. The project of Meri Melkonyan (M.A. Angewandte Literaturwissenschaft) was focused on young adults moving from Iraq to Berlin: she collected in-depth interviews, conducted field work in the city districts where Iraqis usually stay. In her research she is trying to find the answers whether the Iraqi youth feel integrated in Germany, which country do they actually see as their homeland, and what is their attitude to it. All the collected information resulted in a fanzine with shortcuts from the interviews enriched by illustrations of Polina Parygina.