The M.A.D. project is happy to invite you to its first event in London, where together with the panel of experts we will discuss how art and culture can be used to challenge dominant negative narratives.
There is a growing tendency of, what we would like to call, the “othering” phenomenon. Tensions rise high and hate language is used when speaking about Muslims, Roma people, refugees, Blacks or any other group that is considered as “other” to a white European Christian or atheist “standard”. This tendency is easily spotted when flipping through mainstream media headlines or listening to politicians across Europe, some being straightforward. According to a report produced by European Network Against Racism (ENAR), in 2013 there were around 50 000 racist crimes reported across Europe, with majority affected being Muslim women, people of African descent/European, Black people and Roma. In a post-Brexit Europe, that also struggles with increased terrorism threats and a refugee crisis, this number has most likely doubled, and a huge majority of incidents still being unreported. Negative stereotypes are furthermore reinforced by dominant single stories, contributing to a growing atmosphere of fear or even hatred of the “other”.
The M.A.D. project would like to bring several professionals/academics/artists/activists together to open a discussion on how civil society can tackle the growing alienation of the “other”, be they refugees, black community, immigrants, refugees and/or Muslims. In line with the principles of the M.A.D. project we aim to find creative ways of challenging negative mainstream narratives and foster empathy, curiosity and solidarity with marginalised and oppressed groups.
The event will feature a photo exhibition “Dismantling single stories: Muslim women”. Exhibition is a collection of photos taken by members of the M.A.D. project on their research travel in selected Muslim majority countries. The focus of the exhibition is on Muslim women and our choice is motivated by the fact that women, Muslim women, are most at risk to become victims of racist attacks or hate crimes. Therefore, our photos seek to challenge some of the most popular stereotypes about Muslim women.
The event is also an opportunity for the M.A.D project to present its plans for future projects and possibilities for cooperation with potentials partners or individuals.