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17th Oxford Human Rights Festival programme
ACTIVISM 4 - 22 March 2019 Oxford Brookes University

​Other Human Rights events at Oxford Brookes University
Oxford Brookes has a great reputation for hosting and presenting events highlighting the plight of people whose human rights have been violated.

​In October the University celebrated Black History Month and in February it is LGBT History Month. More information can be found on the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion pages of the Brookes website. CENDEP presents a weekly programme of Work in Progress Seminars, which showcase the research done in the school and in related institutions. Everyone is welcome and this semester's programme is available on the blog.The theme of the 17th annual Oxford Human Rights Festival was ACTIVISM and it took place here at Oxford Brookes University from 11th to 15th March 2019. The centerpiece of the festival was the collaborative exhibition in the Glass Tank on LGBTQ+ ACTIVISM, which was co-curated by Jayne Stuart, Chair of Oxford Brookes LGBTQ+ Staff Forum. We were thrilled to welcome acclaimed film director Mike Leigh to headline the festival, answer audience questions about his latest film Peterloo, and talk to Film Studies students. Other highlights included Fair Fashion! Our closing night event in collaboration with the Brookes Union Fashion Society, a talk and screening by Peace One Day founder Jeremy Gilley, and a screening of the documentary Barbara Harrell-Bond: a life not ordinary, with the film maker in conversation.

Mike Leigh headlined 2019 
On Tuesday 12th March 2019 we were thrilled to welcome acclaimed film director Mike Leigh to Oxford Brookes University to talk to Film Studies students (image right, with Senior Lecturer Dr. James Cateridge) and answer audience questions about his latest film Peterloo.
In the year of the 200th anniversary of the protests and massacre, he describes Peterloo as "One of the most significant acts of protest in British history," and highlights the relevance of the film today, noting that the screening was happening while our elected members of parliament were voting on the most important changes in our politics in recent times. He said "In these ever-increasingly chaotic times, human rights abuses are frighteningly rife world-wide. The Oxford Human Rights Festival at Brookes University will doubtless be confronting many aspects of this catastrophe, and it is a privilege to be asked to headline it."

2019 Programme announced
Our 2019 programme ACTIVISM is here! Check out the highlights now on our programme page, including exhibitions looking at LGBTQ+ Activism, and Modern Slavery, a workshop by Peace One Day Founder Jeremy Gilley, lecture on what we can all do to attain a more peaceful world by Nobel nomiee Dr. Scilla Elworthy, screenings of documentaries Barbara Harrell Bond: a life not ordinary and The Silence of Others, an ethical and Fairtrade Fashion Show, and a screening of Mike Leigh's acclaimed Peterloo.
You can download the full programme here.

New ticketing partner announced
Our 2019 programme ACTIVISM is now finalised! We'll be announcing it soon, so watch this space! Our exhibition LGBTQ+ ACTIVISM opens in the Glass Tank on Monday 4th March and the main festival runs from 11th to 15th March. All events take place here at Oxford Brookes University and are open to everyone. All events are free but ticketed. You can make an optional donation to help us continue to put on great informative for years to come. We're pleased to announce that our 2019 ticketing is with Citizen Ticket. Citizen Ticket are a socially conscious group of individuals who run their business in a way that will help achieve social objectives. They believe event ticketing can be turned into a force for good and donate 50% of their booking fees to charities chosen by the event organisers they work with.

An exhibition in the Glass Tank featuring a wide range of LGBTQ+ ACTIVISM artifacts and images, including  the scrapbooks of Tom Guy, Brookes alumnus and founder of Student Pride, who was recently honoured by the Prime Minister, pin badges through the decades, Altrincham FC's Football v Homophobia shirt (photo left © Michael Ripley / Altrincham FC), moving oral histories from Queer Britain, stunning photographs of Drag Synrome, fascinating images from the LSE Glad to be Gay project,  thought provoking artwork and photographs from Beirut Pride and Istanbul Pride, and much more.
9:00 - 17:00 Monday 4 - Friday 22 March 2019 Glass Tank
A collaboration with Oxford Brookes LGBTQ+ Staff Forum.
Exhibition open to the public, no ticket necessary.

An exhibition in The Lab (ground floor Abercrombie, opposite the Glass Tank) of photographs by Oxford Brookes and Oxford Human Rights Festival committee alumnus Rory Carnegie (MA Development and Emergency Practice 2015) highlighting the iniquity of modern slavery in the UK. The photographs and associated campaign has won several awards, toured twelve cities across the country, led to a 25% increase in calls to the modern slavery helpline, and led to the release of two modern slaves.
9:00 - 17:00 Monday 4 - Friday 22 March 2019 The Lab
Exhibition open to the public, no ticket necessary.

Using You Are So Very Beautiful as an exemplar, this is a special Craftivism workshop with Rev. Kate Harford. Come and embroider your favourite protest slogan, or make something to give away as a random act of kindness. All skill levels encouraged to come and give it a go. Materials provided.
12:00-14:00 Friday 8 March 2019 Glass Tank
No ticket necessary. Open to everyone.

This documentary tells the story of Lota and Tigist, two girls living in two very different countries, Bangladesh and Ethiopia, who are linked by the same journey. They were both born in rural areas, they both faced poverty or abuse. Their only option was to run away. Their next destinations were the mega-cities of Dhaka and Addis Ababa. They embark on parallel, incredibly harsh journeys through which they meet their destinies. Yet, despite their tough lives, they reveal an inner strength and great dignity. They come from poverty, but both fight for a life that – maybe tomorrow – will be better.
Film screening with film maker Katarzyna Grabska.
12:30 Monday 11 March 2019 Glass Tank
No ticket necessary. Open to everyone.

Workshop with film maker Katarzyna Grabska.
15:00 Monday 11 March 2019
Workshop for CENDEP students and staff. If you are not part of CENDEP but would like to attend please email to reserve your place. Attendance at the screening of 2 Girls is a prerequisite for this workshop.

Through the prism of an extraordinary life, this documentary explores the achievements of Barbara Harrell-Bond – academic, refugee activist and life-long advocate of refugee rights. The film takes us on a personal journey of a not-so-ordinary woman born in a remote town in South Dakota during the Great Depression. It traces her career from her initial engagement with the civil rights movement in the late Fifties, to her move to the UK in the mid-Sixties where she studied social anthropology at the University of Oxford, and then to her travels in West Africa where she carried out much of her academic research.
Film screening followed by  panel discussion with Dr. Katarzyna Grabska and Professor Patricia Daley.
19:00 Monday 11 March 2019 Kennedy Room
Book your free ticket, or make an optional donation, here.

A majority of refugees find themselves in protracted situations of displacement with no solution in sight. In this context there is much focus on the need for refugees to access employment. But with restrictions on rights to work, employment for refugees may not be a straightforward issue. CENDEP Director Prof. Cathrine Brun  launches a new project funded by the Economic and Social Research Council which will work with Lebanese, Palestinian and Syrian youth in Lebanon to understand the role of their legal status in understanding their paths from different forms of education into different forms of employment.
Talk followed by audience Q&A with Cathrine Brun and Johanna Waters.
12:30 Tuesday 12 March 2019 Glass Tank
No ticket necessary. Open to everyone.

Made to mark the 200th anniversary of the notorious Peterloo Massacre, Mike Leigh's film stars Maxine Peake and Rory Kinnear. On 16 August 1819, a crowd of some 60,000 people from Manchester and surrounding towns gathered in St Peter’s Fields to demand Parliamentary reform and an extension of voting rights. The meeting had been peaceful but in the attempt to arrest a leader of the meeting, the armed government militias panicked and charged upon the crowd.
Film screening followed by audience Q&A with director Mike Leigh.
18:30 Tuesday 12 March 2019 John Henry Brookes Lecture Theatre
Book your free ticket, or make an optional donation, here.

Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) and its impact then and now. This session will tell the story of a charity that started with young British volunteers setting out in 1958 to work in Sarawak, Ghana and Nigeria and which today describes itself as the world’s leading independent international development organisation offering volunteers the chance to share their skills in tackling poverty and marginalisation. Hear first-hand from VSO about how today’s global strategy for changing lives works - and the experience of former volunteers. 
Talk followed by audience Q&A with BBC journalist Mike Wooldridge and Heather Alcock from VSO.
12:30 Wednesday 13 March 2019 Glass Tank
No ticket necessary. Open to everyone.

During this session, Jeremy Gilley will talk about Peace One Day and the 20 year journey he has taken across 123 countries. Most importantly, he will illuminate how the film camera and story telling played a crucial role in manifesting Peace Day 21st September, establishing a cease fire in Afghanistan and informing billions of people around the world about Peace Day.   
Workshop with Founder of Peace One Day Jeremy Gilley.
14:00 - 16:00 Wednesday 13 March 2019 SKW Lecture Theatre
Book your free ticket, or make an optional donation, here.

Many of us feel powerless in the face of what we see on television or read in the news - a world in crisis, with wars and violence taking place across the globe. Nobel Peace Prize nominee Dr. Scilla Elworthy will show us how to step out of helplessness and apply our own personal skills to do something about the challenges now facing the world.
Lecture by Dr. Scilla Elworthy.
18:00 Wednesday 13 March 2019 John Henry Brookes Lecture Theatre
Part of the Oxford Brookes Open Lectures series.
Reserve your free ticket here.

This documentary reveals the epic struggle of victims of Spain's 40-year dictatorship under General Franco, who continue to seek justice to this day. Filmed over six years, the film follows the survivors as they organize the groundbreaking 'Argentine Lawsuit' and fight state-imposed amnesia of crimes against humanity, and explores a country still divided four decades into a democracy. Seven years in the making, The Silence of Others is the second documentary feature by Emmy-winning film makers Almudena Carracedo and Robert Bahar.
Film screening followed by audience Q&A with the film makers.
19:00 Thursday 14 March 2019 John Henry Brookes Lecture Theatre
In partnership with the Oxford Brookes Documentary Club.
Book your free ticket here.

The Central African Republic is currently facing one of the worst humanitarian situations as 54% of the population is in need of emergency relief and more than 25% is displaced. As in most protracted conflicts, relief operations are ongoing despite the fact that we all know that they do not provide sustainable solutions. The debate on localisation and on the nexus relief-development-peacebuilding is also high in the humanitarian agenda. CENDEP is collaborating with Caritas Centrafrique for the last 20 months, aiming at building on local agencies to bring innovation and change. 
We therefore started a reflection on the specificity and the ambitions of national NGOs in the humanitarian system and through action research, started building on tacit local knowledge in order to identify new ways of working. This is still a work in progress and we aim to share with you our first reflections.
Talk by Dr. Brigitte Piquard.
12:30 Friday 15 March 2019 Glass Tank
No ticket necessary. Open to everyone.



FAIR FASHIONA panel discussion with representatives from and founders of ethical and Fairtrade fashion and sports brands, followed by a fashion show where their clothes and accessories will be modeled by Brookes students.18:00 Friday 15 March 2019 Glass TankIn partnership with Brookes Union Fashion Society, Brookes Union Sound and Light Society and Oxford Brookes Estates and Facilities Management team. No booking required - just turn up.ACTIVISM! OPEN MIC POETRY NIGHTExploring the themes of this year’s Oxford Human Rights Festival and LGBTQ+ History Month (History: peace, reconciliation, and activism), we invite local poets and Oxford Brookes students to read and perform work inspired by the themes, either by themselves or by other poets.19:00 Tuesday 19 March 2019 Glass TankIn partnership with the Oxford Brookes Poetry Centre and the Oxford Brookes LGBTQ+ Staff Forum. No booking required - just turn up.BOOTS ON THE GROUND: FINDING EMPOWERMENT THROUGH ACTIVISM, CRAFTIVISM AND PROTESTA narrative of powerlessness is sold to us on a daily basis. As complex political options are reduced and polarised between ‘no deal’ or a ‘bad deal’ democratic processes leave large swathes of the population wanting. Switching on the television frequently serves as an unwelcome reminder that there isn’t enough money, enough time, or enough resources, and reaffirms that our world is plagued with multiple forms of injustice which, as individuals, we can do little to impact. In its broadest sense, ‘inequality’ could justifiably be nominated the political and social zeitgeist for our time.Faced as we are with an endless list of seemingly insurmountable iniquities, apathy could become an appealing and easily-accessible place of refuge from our own seeming lack of agency. The question we should be asking ourselves is, how we find empowerment in situations which leave us feeling powerless?Using personal photos, mementos and examples of craftivism, Emily discusses finding empowerment through her activism, some of the challenges she faces as an activist ‘on the ground’, and whether any of it really makes a difference.Talk followed by audience Q&A with Emily Scott.12:30 Wednesday 20 March 2019 Glass TankNo ticket necessary. Open to everyone.RESEARCHING INVISIBLE PEOPLE IN MODERN SLAVERY: PROJECTS AT OXFORD BROOKES AND ELMORE COMMUNITY SERVICES, OXFORD How do we as researchers know about such invisible people? How do we inquire into the lives and experiences of people who are invisible among us, because they might have followed paths to change their lives for the better and fallen into tangled webs of exploitation, systems of debt and other complex socio-economic structures as well as powerful personal and criminal relations that hold them in some forms of modern slavery? How can we contribute to inform, critique and improve policies as well as institutional and business practices to eliminate slavery through research in universities and in charities? To conclude the photo exhibition ‘Invisible People’ in the Lab and as an extension to the Oxford Human Rights Festival, Dr Tamsin Barber (Oxford Brookes, Social Sciences Department), Dr Kate Clayton-Hathway (Oxford Brookes, Centre for Diversity Policy Research and Practice)and Fiona Gell (Elmore Community Services, Oxford) will present and discuss their respective research and experience as researchers: on modern slavery from Vietnam to cannabis farms and nails salons in London, from Central Europe to hotels in Scandinavia and the UK, to local responses to address threats and provide effective responses to identify, protect, refer and support victims in Oxford. Panel presentation and dicussion followed by audience Q&A.12:30 Thursday 21 March 2019 Glass Tank / The LabNo ticket necessary. Open to everyone.ACTIVISM 4 - 22 March 2019 Oxford Brookes UniversitySpeaker biographiesReverend Kate Harford is a Christian priest who leads the Multifaith Chaplaincy at Oxford Brookes University and offers spiritual and pastoral care to any member of the university (of any or no faith). She works closely with other Chaplains to ensure that all staff and students can access the Multifaith Chaplaincy for support, and coordinates the events in the Mulitfaith Chaplaincy. Kate was ordained in November 2015 by the Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC). She has a particular interest in interfaith dialogue, queer and intersectional feminist theology, and theologies of suffering and mental health. Before ordination Kate worked with charities for young people across the UK, homeless people in London, and LGBT+ asylum seekers within and beyond the church. Kate is a leader in Girl Guides and enjoys knitting, crochet, roller derby, and playing the flute in a concert band. She is married to Emily and they live locally with their tortoiseshell cat, Mrs. Evadne Cake.Dr. Katarzyna Grabska is a Senior Fellow at the Global Migration Centre at the Graduate Institute Geneva. She holds a BSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics and an MA in International Affairs and Conflict management from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies. Her research interests focus on inter-linkages between conflict, forced displacement, gender, generations and rights. She received her PhD in Development Studies/Anthropology from the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) at the University of Sussex, UK. Her research focuses on social transformations in the context of forced displacement and return among southern Sudanese refugees. She is particularly interested in intersections of power, gender identities and gender and generational relations in forced displacement situations and the impact of (forced) migration on youth. She has worked and researched in the humanitarian field on issues of human rights, migration, and refugees in Egypt, Guinea, Ghana, Kyrgyzstan, South Sudan, Cambodia and Vietnam. She has conducted research on refugee livelihoods and access to rights in the Middle East and East Africa. Before embarking on doctoral studies, she worked as a researcher at the Forced Migration and Refugee Studies program at the American University in Cairo and was a coordinator and a researcher with the Development Research Centre on Migration, Globalization and Poverty. Between 2011-2012, she was a post-doctoral research fellow with the NCCR North-South involved in a research on migration and mobilities in Ghana, Sudan and Nepal. She has been involved in research and in teaching of gender and development courses at IHEID as well as of anthropology of humanitarian action at CERAH.Professor Patricia Daley is Professor of the Human Geography of Africa. She is also Vice-Principal and The Helen Morag Fellow in Geography at Jesus College, Oxford and co-founder of the Oxford University Black and Minority Ethnic staff network. Professor Daley’s principal research interests spans forced migration, identity politics and citizenship, intersections of space, gender, militarism, sexual violence and peace (feminist geo-politics); Critical Race Theory and decolonizing methodologies and the relationship between conservation, resource extraction, and rural livelihoods with the geographical loci of research in East and Central Africa, and the UK.Professor Cathrine Brun is Director of the Centre for Development and Emergency Practice (CENDEP), a multidisciplinary centre under School of Architecture at Oxford Brookes Univeristy that brings together aid workers, academics,, professionals and preactitioners to develop practice-oriented approaches in disaster risk reduction and response, chronic poverty, building urban resilience, conflict transformation, refugee studies and torture prevention. She has worked for 20 years on forced migration as a result of conflict and disasters. Currently she is working particularly on humanitarianism in protracted displacement and chronic crises and with housing for forced migrants. Much of her work has been in urban contexts and in camps. As a human geographer, she is interested in how, in chronic crises and displacement, the relationships between people and places change due to displacement, with a view to understanding the relationships between displaced and their hosts and notions of housing and home. Her work often emphasises how people who experience crises deal with adversity – especially how they strategise and manoeuvre in the course of encounters with institutions and regimes. Her work has also engaged with the ethics and politics of humanitarianism, the experiences and practices of humanitarians, and the unintended consequences of humanitarian categories and labelling practices, particularly in the context of long-term conflict and displacement. Temporal and spatial dimensions of both forced migration and humanitarianism are cross-cutting themes in her work. Collaborating with colleagues, organisations and citizen groups in Sri Lanka, Georgia and more recently Malawi, she has developed innovatory methods for ethnographic fieldwork, participatory action research and real time research. She is interested in how such methodological insights may contribute to improving knowledge production, particularly among humanitarian organisations.Mike Leigh OBE is an award winning film screenwriter, playwright and director, best known for filmwhich focus on British working class life, such as Secrets and Lies and Vera Drake, as well as the suburban aspirational seventies comedy of manners Abigail's Party.Mike Wooldridge OBE is a world affairs correspondent for the BBC. He has been their East Africa, South Africa, and Religious Affairs correspondent, reporting on the influence of religion in modern societies, focusing on conflict arising from religion. In 1996 he moved to Delhi to become the South Asia correspondent and in 2001 he became a world affairs correspondent.Jeremy Gilley is a British actor and film maker, and founder of the non-profit organisation Peace One Day.Dr. Scilla Elworthy was nominated three times for a Nobel Peace Prize nominee for her work with Oxford Research Group to develop effective dialogue between nuclear weapons policy-makers worldwide and their critics, work which included a series of meetings between Chinese, Russian and western nuclear scientists and military. She founded Peace Direct in 2002 to fund, promote and learn from local peace-builders in conflict areas: Peace Direct was voted ‘Best New Charity’ in 2005. She was awarded the Niwano Peace Prize in 2003 and was adviser to Peter Gabriel, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Sir Richard Branson in setting up ‘The Elders’. Scilla co-founded Rising Women Rising World in 2013, and FemmeQ in 2016 to establish the qualities of feminine intelligence for women and men as essential to use in building a safer world. Her TED talk on nonviolence has been viewed by over 1,400,000 people.Her latest book The Business Plan for Peace: Building a World Without War (2017) and her book Pioneering the Possible: awakened leadership for a world that works (North Atlantic Books, 2014) both received critical acclaim from experts in the field. Scilla is an Ambassador for Peace Direct, a Councillor of the World Future Council and patron of Oxford Research Group; adviser to the Syria Campaign and the Institute for Economics and Peace. She advises the leadership of selected international corporations as well as students and young social entrepreneurs. Scilla is a mother, stepmother, and grandmother and loves messing about in her garden near Oxford in the UK.Dr. Brigitte Piquard is an anthropologist; Reader in Humanitarianism and Conflict at Oxford Brookes University in the UK. She has conducted field researches mainly in Asia and the Middle East.  Since 2005, she has been working in the OPT, particularly on spatial occupation and resilience. She is the head of the Building Sumud Project (BSP), an action research project aiming at monitoring interactions between social and environmental impacts of the occupation and symbolic violence. It highlights the potential of architectural and social intervention towards conflict transformation. (  She is also the initiator of the Observatory of Symbolic Violence launched for the moment in Colombia and in Palestine.Dr. Emily Scott is an intersectional feminist, advocate for women’s equality and volunteer with Oxford Sexual Abuse and Rape Crisis Centre.

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