Gulwali Passarlay

Ben Rawlence and Gulwali Passarlay

Refugees and the End of Empathy?

Bristol800/
Fri 18 March 2016

Ben Rawlence and Gulwali Passarlay

Refugees and the End of Empathy?

Gulwali Passarlay
Fri 18 March 2016,

The migration and refugee crisis is expected to intensify over the coming months. How do we get to the facts of the crisis and the impact that taking in refugees has on local places, communities and economies?

Gulwali Passarlay, originally from Afghanistan, survived a terrifying journey on a tiny boat in the Mediterranean; braved the brutality of those who should care for children; and spent a desolate month in the camp at Calais. Alone in Britain, he was fostered, worked hard at school, won a place at a top university and was chosen to carry the Olympic torch in 2012. He has written about his life in The Lightless Sky: An Afghan Refugee Boy’s Journey of Escape to A New Life in Britain.

In City of Thorns: Nine Lives in the World’s Largest Refugee Camp Ben Rawlence tells the true stories of individuals that call the Dadaab refugee camp – where he spent four years – home. Dadaab is a humanitarian crisis: to the Kenyan government, it is a ‘nursery for terrorists’; to the western media, it is a dangerous no-go area; but to its half a million residents, it is their last resort.

Both writers bring to life the plight of the thousands of men, women and children who risk their lives to leave behind the troubles of their homelands.

This is one of the events in a special weekend of activity looking at endings and beginnings (a theme which will also be part of other festival events in 2016). It is part of Bristol800: a programme throughout 2016 marking significant anniversaries in the city and what they mean for Bristol now and into the future. Bristol800 is an initiative of Bristol Cultural Development Partnership (Arts Council England, Bristol City Council and Business West).

In association with/

Share this/

Related Events/