Mediterranean Migrants Panel


Race and resistance

The TORCH Programme Race and Resistance are hosting their weekly seminar. Last year witnessed an unprecedented rise in the transcontinental movement of people across the Mediterranean. The UNHCR estimates that approximately 60 million people had been forcibly displaced by the end of 2014, many as refugees of the ensuing conflict in Syria. The exilic movements of migrants and refugees have long been a feature of contemporary Middle Eastern history – the Israeli-Palestinian conflict from the 1960s onward, Cypriot and Lebanese peoples in the 1970s, Iraqis from 2003 – and, for centuries, the exchange of cultures across the Mediterranean basin has facilitated the creation of the modern, globalised world. The panel will seek to ask vital questions about the passage of displaced peoples across the Mediterranean – both contemporary and historical – to understand more on the relationship between displacement and literature, and to reflect on the cultural expression of refugees in response to violence, exile, and homelessness. Claire Chambers, who has published widely on British Muslim literatures, will discuss the depiction of diaspora in narrative. Nadia Atia, who has written extensively on British representations of twentieth-century Mesopotamia, will examine the figure of the Iraqi outside Iraq and the formation of modern diasporic communities. Anna Bernard, whose research has explored narratives of nationhood by Israeli and Palestinian authors, will be examining literary representations of Palestinians from the 1970s and 1980s. The chair, Daniele Nunziata, currently researches literary representations of Cyprus before and after junctures of colonisation, independence, and partition.


Race and Resistance across Borders in the Long Twentieth Century

Contact name: Louisa Layne
Contact email:
Audience: Open to all