Some of my 2015 Photographs
Text Selection 2015
Some of my 2015 Photographs
Text Selection 2015
|Radio Feature DW Jewish Child Refugee||https://dzx2.net/2015/12/23/radio-featureworld-in-progress-jewish-child-refugee/|
|Reichskristallnacht und das Volk. (English Comment)||https://dzx2.net/2015/11/09/reichskristallnacht-und-das-volk/|
|Interview: Die Überlebende: Marina Litvinenko, the survivor||https://dzx2.net/2015/03/12/die-uberlebende-marina-litwinenko-the-survivor-marina-litvinenko/|
|https://dzx2.net/2015/06/27/back-to-eden-kult-hairstylist-in-london-the-roots-of-hair-culture/||Back To Eden, London Rastafari Hair Couture from the Roots|
|World Capital for the Rich||https://dzx2.net/2015/05/05/eine-weltstadt-fur-reiche-world-capital-for-the-rich/|
|Leitkommentar / Leading Comment Juedische Allgemeine||https://dzx2.net/2015/06/25/bds-gegen-den-isolierten-boykott-von-israel-against-the-isolated-boycott-of-israel/|
| Der Fall Jeremiah Duggan
|Nie Wieder Keine Farbigen||https://dzx2.net/2015/05/12/never-again-no-coloureds-nie-wieder-keine-farbigen/|
|A Question of Remembering||https://dzx2.net/2015/04/16/eine-frage-des-nationalen-gedenkens-und-vergessens-a-question-of-national-memorialisation-and-forgetting/|
|Remembering Terror 1972||https://dzx2.net/2015/03/09/how-to-remember-the-terrorism-of-1972/
|Schuhe selbst machen||https://dzx2.net/2015/01/31/schuhe-selbst-machen-in-moretonhampstead-devon-go-make-your-own-shoes/|
|Ai Weiwei in London||https://dzx2.net/2015/09/21/ai-weiwei-royal-academy-london/|
|London: Von Privatbuttler bus zur Mausefalle (from private buttler to a mat in a tent.||https://dzx2.net/2015/09/29/von-privatbuttler-bis-mausefalle-taz-hier-mit-bildern/|
|Frank Auerbach, the old master
Wer in London, einer der teuersten Städte der Welt, hungert, kann sich von Hare Krishna täglich durchfüttern lassen und zwar kostenlos, vegetarisch und ayurvedisch, Die Gemeinde der Londoner Obdachlosen schwört drauf und auch unter Londons verarmten Studenten ist dies längst kein Geheimtip mehr. Ich schaute ein wenig hinter die Kulissen, wer das Essen zu sich nimmt und wie es zubereitet wird. Mehr dazu und ein Kochrezept zum Nachkochen, erfuhr man in der Sonntaz vom 6.12.14 Dieser Beitrag war Teil einer langen Serie von Streetfoodberichten der taz Korrespondenten, u.a. auch aus New York und Bejing.
London may be one of the most expensive cities the world, but if you are hungry in London and have no money, you can eat free of charge with Hare Krishna. Many of London’s homeless in London await this essential food distribution, fully vegetarian and ayurveric daily. In the report I shed some light into the operation and the background of the people and organisations who make this possible, plus a free recipe. Published in Sonntaz 6/12/14 as part of a multi series of taz’s correspondents on street food that also featured streetfood from Bejing and New York.
Ein Besuch bei Sheila Vogel-Coupe. 85 in London. Sie ist seit einigen Jahren Escort Dame
A visit at Sheila Vogel-Coupe, 85, and since a few years an escort
Ein Bericht über einen freiwilligen Dopingkontrolleur.
An article I wrote about a German Doping Control Officer who is volunteer at the London Olympics.
“A Better Way?” wants to examine the case for food co-ops in conversation with people knowledgeable in the field.
Originally broadcasted on Londnon Resonance FM 104.4 Saturday 7th July 2012 12.00 – 13.00
Listen here: Audio Archive: Food Co-ops: A better Way?
This new piece for Resonance FM, London 104.4 is really a “re-cut,” using material from a documentary produced for a German audience and aired on Querfunk. (listen here) It was totally re-edited from the original material elaborated on and new material was also collected.
My main aim was to examine the case for food co-ops. This was not going to be a feature about supermarkets and what they are about, although some of that was included, because it forms the basis of why many start up food co-ops. Armin Valet of the Hamburg Consumer Council and Majorie Stein of Eden Farms make their cases on this quite well. Those who want to know more, may want to watch the 2011 BBC Panorama feature ‘Supermarkets: What Price Cheap Food ?’ which is available on you tube.
In the German original one of the key persons talking the listener through was Santa Meyer-Nandi of Finding Sustaina an UNESCO (Germany) award wining blog. She was an interesting person both in terms of what she said to me over the mic, as she walked me through the The People’s Supermarket (TPS).
But also because she later left TPS to join the work-force of a local fine foods store situated in the same street as TPS called Kennard’s. Meyer-Nandi felt that TPS had damaged this local store by selling some of the same goods and offering cooked meals. Meyer-Nandi believed that a supermarket ought to also relate to other local stores and have” gentleman agreements” on what they sell and do not sell. Kennard’s weren’t willing to comment on this, and about five months ago they had closed down. If it was really down to TPS or due to other reasons I can not say. Probably a mixture of reasons.
Other things that were different with the new edition were the fact that I sought to speak with Waitrose and The Co-Operative Supermarket chains. Both asked me lots of questions beforehand about the content of my questions and my intentions. So much for corporate damage control. Waitrose was also very keen to know who I spoke with at the Co-op.
After 14 days wait Waitrose said they were unable to provide me with “the right person to speak to” as he or she, was now abroad, even though I had offered to call the person regardless of location. Neither was Waitrose able to get somebody down to their new London Stratford showcase supermarket and walk me around there. They said it was because the local store manager could not do this, and the people who could were at their HQ miles away. On the other hand, I have attended an evening on London Air Quality, where a John Lewis / Waitrose official outlined some quite remarkable policies on how they would reduce emissions in their fleet, including hybrid and electrical vehicles and using gas produced from waste to power some. But the Local Government Authority felt that Waitrose was not yet one of their best performers. In the end Waitrose provided me with a written statement which I used in the documentary.
The Co-operative Group was able to offer me with one of their busiest regional secretaries, he was very informative and gave me over 30 minutes of his time. In the programme a tension came up between Kate Bull and Graham Hammond on the issue of getting a loan as a co-op. Bull argued the Co-operative Bank was not forthcoming for loans, whilst Hammond argued they help new forming co-ops. Originally I had another musical interlude in the feature. I had edited in the Co-Op’s 2011 Join the Revolution TV and Film advertisement and music, openly available on youtube, to introduce Graham Hammond, but my contact from the Co-Op Group media department argued, to my great surprise, that the department could not approve the use, because of the artistic copyrights involved. It sounded rather strange to me, and perhaps they were worried that their ad was going to be misused.
The Fair Shares Food- Co-op was quite a remarkable little place. I quite liked it but it does have restricted opening hours. I have never bought oat grains as cheaply as from them. In the original German version I described Fair Shares as a “remarkable store in the chaos of an urban city centre.” I noted, that ‘where elsewhere stores install CCTV circuit cameras and hire security guards and detectives, here is an example of a store that has none of these features, and even believes the customer’s own calculations of how much the product is she is buying.’ Kevin said they were only once ripped off and on that occasion the customers handed the goods back. Still it was disappointing that they had opted for a blank boycott of Israeli goods, especially given the fact that with the co-operative Kibbutz Movement, and the associated co-operative Moshav Movement. I know at least one Kibbutz, that has been known to be particularly outspoken on Palestinian – Israeli issues, Kibbutz Givat Haviva (but it was only in 2008 that a Palestinian with Israeli citizenship became Israel’s first Kibbutz member). A blank boycott may be also detrimental to all positive forces within Israel. Gush Shalom, the peace campaign founded by Uri Avneri’s has for example said, that those who wish to boycott due to positions against the occupation of the West Bank, should be more specific and had issued a list to boycott specific produce from the settlements, which is now going through legal challenges in Israel. Whether or not boycotts themselves are a productive force is a matter of much discussion. My personal opinion is that the situation is a far more complex one, and that if Israel is singled out for a boycott, those who support it must ask themselves why only Israel is chosen from a plate that is full of other countries that may be held to be politically unjust. I had personally chosen to commit myself for many years to a Jewish Israeli – Palestinian peace village, Wahat al-Salam – Neve Shalom instead, with real people who live and work the future most of us wish for in the Middle East, and whose UK media liaison person I was (via British Friends).
The Battle Hymn of the Co-operations played in my documentary is probably the first time you hear the track since the 1930s. I found it mentioned on the web. It was written by Elizabeth Mead and Carl Ferguson in 1932 and is thought to be a pre-curser of ‘Solidarity for Ever,’ both based on the Battle Hymn of the Republic. The artist performing it in my documentary is called Tom Smith who is a London based jazz drummer and music teacher. The song was was specially performed and recorded for this feature. You can listen to the full version of the song here:
Since the recording The People’s Super Market have decided to use extracts of the song as their current jingle tune mixed with statements by some of their members.
There is one piece I have not included in the feature. It is Nelson Fernandez who is the Green Grocer of The People’s Supermarket
I thought his evidence being quite hard touching especially the bit about getting a job and falling in love with another shop assistant.
I had to think of Bruce Springsteen’s Queen of the Supermarket when he told me his story…
Resonance FM London is supported by the Art council and TheWire.co.uk amongst others, and broadcasts some outstanding challenging and experimental radio productions, as well as new and upcoming radio producers and special interest radio shows (such as Talking Africa)! If you can make a small donation on their web-site to support this unique medium!
“A Better Way?” was produced and presented by Daniel Zylbersztajn / dzx2.net
Voice Overs: Sophie Talbot
Radio-feature, 55 min., Production Date May 2012.
for distribution rights contact Daniel
A 25min long feature on food-coops runs currently on chosen Free Radio German stations with strong co-operative tradition. It just felt right that the long version of this documentary should go to initiatives of similar nature to food co-operatives . More Power to the people!
Feature includes interviews from New York, London and Hamburg. English translated into German with German moderation.
Ein 25 minütiges Radiofeature über Lebensmittelkooperativen ist momentan im Angebot von verschiedenen freien Radiostationen mit kooperativer nicht staatlicher Tradition. Es passte einfach, dass die lange Version dieses Features an gleich-inhaltliche Einrichtungen ging. More power to the people!
Feature beinhaltet Interviews aus New York, London und Hamburg, Englisch ins Deutsche übersetzt und moderiert.
Listen to the podcast:
On Air Schedule:
To broadcast it on your radio station simply use the sound-cloud stream and notify me in advance!
With great and humble gratitude I am pleased to learn that my feature School for Peace in Oasis of Peace was listed best new audio file to listen to on 30 May 2009 by the people at Audiofarm. Audiofarm is something like a youtube for audio files. It hosts countless numbers of audio files, with many added daily. I am very grateful to them for honouring the documentary in this way, and once again thanks to the British Friends of Neve Shalom ~ Wahat al Salam and the all at the School for Peace in the village.
In 2001 I did a fantastic little feature for Cool about Toy-makers. It was a strange world I entered with toy obsessed people.
All Rights Reserved
Feature recorded, presented and produced by Daniel Zylbersztajn
Queen Feature for Cool
Originally broadcasted in 2000 – full transcript follows – all rights reserved
Do you have a King or a Queen in your country? If you are listening from an English speaking country, chances are that the royal family of Great Britain was once the head of your country, or that the Queen still is your country’s head. Queen Elizabeth the Second is not only the representative head of various Commonwealth countries but also of is the head of the Church of England. All this makes her sound like a very powerful woman. Daniel Zylbersztajn went to investigate what young people in England had to say about her:
[anthem music only god safe the queen 20’’ ]
VP1 “She is gorgeous”
VP2: “ I think she makes a fairly good head of state!”
VP3: “She rules!”
VP4: “She should get a job and stop taking the tax payers money!”
VP5: “Well she is not as beautiful as our president!”
VP6: Maybe she is old, but she is cool!
[Daniel] Many ways to describe this one person her majesty the Queen Elizabeth the second, who has been Queen now for almost fifty years assuming official duties when she was only 16 years old. The Queen doesn’t only own expensive crowns kept for her in the Tower of London, she may be the richest woman in the world, owning over five billion pounds sterling. She can summon and dissolve the British parliament and is also the supreme legal power in the country. Post-boxes and coins in Britain bear her emblem or picture. But not everyone gets the honour to meet her. It are mostly distinguished and honourable persons that get to meet her. Cynthia and Mathew from Cornwall in England are two persons who met her recently. Both of them study for their A-Levels at the moment. Both of them were winners of an essay competition on the Second World War, and their first price was to meet the Queen. What better people than them, to give you a first impression of what the Queen is like.
[Cynthia] “Good Afternoon your majesty! I had to courtesy when I met her, and refer to her as your majesty!
[Matthew] You have to shake hands and say Good Afternoon Ma.
[Cynthia] When we met her she wasn’t as scary really as we thought, I don’t think!
[Matthew]She is really nice and not what you’d expect. She was really normal. She is only small as well, she is only about five-foot tall.
[Daniel] Only five foot? I always though she must be of gigantic measures, judging her powers. I asked Cynthia and Mathew what they felt the Queen was all about:
[Cynthia] The royal family serve a big purpose. They stand for Britain, without standing for politics. And they, you know, even though , the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are really quite old now, they continue to work all the time, representing the country at some many things.
[Matthew] They are definitely a role model for everyone in England and the world really! Because everyone should aim to be like them!
[Cynthia] I don’t think that the royal family are role models for the rest of us. I think it is too much of a burden to be place on one family! But the mannerism and the behaviour of the Queen and of the Duke of Edinburgh, of the royal family, are different to em, for example leading politicians in the country.
So there you are. Well most politicians do not rule for 50 years, so of course the Queen would have a very distinguished and settled routine. For most people the Queen is still only something they see on their TV, or maybe on a post-card. Opposite Buckingham Palace, the large London residence of the Queen, there are many shops where you can buy items that de-picture the Queen Mr. Barzu is the store-owner of one these shops:
The most popular items that we sell, related to her majesty the Queen are:
Postcards, trays and mugs celebrating the golden wedding anniversary, also coronation, these items are very popular with people from abroad, especially the Germans, Australians and the Americans and the students from schools. We often see her majesty the queen driving past. Once I waved and I was greeted with a smile and I thought it was very encouraging!
Mr Barzu must have been on cloud nine for an entire week. I think he should always wear a sticker or T-shirt saying: I was smiled to by the Queen!
The Queen in Britain is still as popular as ever. In fact she has recently revamped her image and skills and even tried to understand how computers work, which is more than for many people over the age of seventy, although she is apparently not on e-mail as yet.
For Cool I am Daniel Zylbersztajn from London, leaving you with some more impressions of people on the streets of London when I asked them about the Queen:
[anthem music only god safe the queen 5’’ ]
Voice 1, male: God save our gracious Queen!
Voice 2, male, long live our noble Queen!
Voice 3, female: God Save the Queen
At 17” anthem Vox pops set in
VP1: She is a drag queen!
VP2: She is not the real Queen. They’re fake, they’re not the real kings and queens on this planet, she is just sitting on fortunes that are not hers
VP3: Ah, she is all right! Wears awful cloths though. She needs to get back to the sixties, when she used to wear shorter skirts, I think!
[Anthem finishes] male voice: God Save the Queen!
This feature was broadcasted in 2000 on DW – transcript follows
all rights reserved
At the beginning of October, London hosted the MOBO awards, MOBO standing for Music of Black Origin. It is important to consider MOBO within Europe’s and North America’s history. “Black music” supposedly means by people with a black skin colour. For years, many black artists were pushed behind. Their songs were often copied by white performers to satisfy audiences, alienated by blacks. In the eighties and nineties, attempts to label music were made, to try to correct, decades of exclusion.
MOBO supporters hold the view that the drum was invented in Africa –as most music has a drum based rhythm – most music is held to be black. But why be specific here, if, most likely, the totality of humanity originated in Africa? Different folk traditions made use of drums –not always due to an African migration.
So. can music be separated into black and white? Kanya King is one of the founders and main driving forces behind MOBO, which this years saw fames like Lauryn Hill, and Armand van Helden, both of darker complexion, and Fat Boy Slim and Emi-nem, on the lighter side of shades. With her I discussed the meaning and history of MOBO:
Kanya King: “The MOBO award was founded through award and celebrity artists involved in the broad spectrum of music of black origin and that encompasses Hip Hop R&B, Gospel, Jazz, Reggae et cetera. Basically the MOBO awards are unique because they celebrate the basis of much popular music today, as well as saluting the rich history and cultural diversity apparent in today’s multi-cultural society. It’s only been going three years, this will be the fourth year. It goes out worldwide to an audience of over a 100 Million people.
I think there became a time when I said look, I’d been to see a lot of organisations I had the door slammed in my face: “Oh look this is niche music, It’s a niche event! “ I said: No it’s not a niche event! You only have to look at the sales pattern and politics of music today and you re realising we’re defining the future of world music. You know, the acts that we’re talking’ about are securing number one global hits around the world. In a way I said, what we’re trying to do is something positive. We’re trying to celebrate the music, we’re also trying to celebrate genres that often get overlooked in other mainstream award ceremonies.”
Daniel Zylbersztajn: ”But it seems like at the moment we have a little bit of circulation from awards to awards, especially big people like Lauryn Hill, Puff Daddy is certainly somebody who has been recognised by MTV awards and what have you!!
Kanya King: “These artists feel comfortably not only n specialist charts but also in mainstream charts. So there is a lot of talent out there. We have an award called the unsigned act award. Basically what we are trying to do is to provide a platform for them. What we’re saying is, most people would wholeheartedly agree that most forms of popular music today have their roots in black heritage, and that’s what we’re doing trying to celebrate that fact. It doesn’t matter the colour or creed of an artist.. It’s a bout the music that counts.
Daniel Zylbersztajn: “African musicians in Europe are pretty much marginalised, and also would deserve an award!?”
Kanya King: “You’ve got Hip Hop and R&B, that’s African music! It started with the drum! Gospel music and Reggae music is marginalised! What we’re trying to do is say there are many forms of African music. And African music is R&B and Hip-Hop as well!
Daniel Zylbersztajn: “But why haven’t you got an award for African music?”
Kanya King: “We haven’t got an award for English music!
Daniel Zylbersztajn: “I thought that the award us called music of black origin?”
Kanya King: “Why do we need to call an award for African music when it should be either highlife or Zoot – we have a ninety minute slot and we obviously try to reflect, you know, a reggae act performance. A dance act performance, a hip-hop act performance, a gospel act performance. If we can – we only have ninety minutes of television, so we can’t reflect everything although we’d love to. It’s a very difficult choice, because what you’re trying to do is to give something have something for everyone and even though we have people say: Oh. Can we have not have more reggae acts on our show performing – you should have more dance acts, you try to reflect as much as you can, obviously with the time that you have. What’s also important is that rock music as well, we have black artists. People see that very much as a white genre, obviously you have to look where it’s come from. What we’re trying to do is to focus on music that doesn’t necessarily always get the recognition.!”
Daniel Zylberstajn: “Can you explain a little bit, how was it like when you grew up? How was it like for most black people, in this country about this recognition?”
Kanya King: “Gosh – when I was growing up, it was very very difficult to hear my influences, I mean whether it’s Sam Cook, John Holt or Steve Wonder, I think the sales patterns and politics of music is changing, and it’s no longer niche music, it’s part of the main stream today which is very important and this is really what we were campaigning for to make sure that black music is not marginalised, like it has been done in the past.”
Kanya King organiser of the MOBO.
If MOBO would specify black musical invention that occurred at specific locations, maybe the growth of rap and hip-hop in poverty ridden black populated urban areas in the USA, It would maybe have more validity. MOBO only circles between Britain, the Caribbean and the U.S.A. Today, Hip-Hop and other music forms are made in other world locations too! Most critically, a black origin music award begs its opposite – a white award –an impossibility in contemporary Europe, except for white supremacists. Further, what exactly do the generalising words black or white people mean anyway? They seem to gain meaning only in the context of a Europe and America for several centuries prejudiced towards people of a darker complexion. In the musical context consider also that Europe’s own native musical traditions – white music in the ears of MOBO – have and are still often ridiculed as backwards and primitive, those who believe Europe is the only place with a higher culture. Perhaps what we really need is to re-evalue our understandings of music, beyond black and white?
For Deutsche Welle, I am Daniel Zylbersztajn in London.
2000 Interview with Kanya King, organizer of the MOBO award, on background and history of MOBO.
Originally aired on Cool.
recorded, presented and produced by Daniel Zylbersztajn,
Date of production: 16 November 1999
Produced and presented by: Daniel Zylbersztajn
IN: Recently British Jewish
Out: For Deutsche Welle I am Daniel Zylbersztajn from London
Recently British Jewish Playwriter Julia Pascal and Black American Playwriter Bonnie Greer united their creative powers in a unique event at the British Library in London, which was to try to combine the work of the two writers in one event.
More significantly, in order to bring together, Jews and Blacks and their histories of collective sufferings, led by the voices of women. This was going to be a day that had the issues of trauma, loss and survival and how to enact these histories on stage, at its heart.
But not only was this a performing event, but it opened up to a critical debate, following presentations of Greer’s and Pascal’s works, a debate in which holocaust survivors, who were amongst the invited guests, actively participated and thus allowed for invaluable first hand commentary.
The two writers had worked previously together, Bonnie Greer has been acting for Julia Pascal and is now associate writer of the Pascal Theatre Company.
The event opened with extracts from various plays by Julia Pascal. Julia Pascal has gained international credibility as a second generation British Jew. Her plays include Theresa, The Dead Woman on Holiday, and Dybuk, all of whom deal with
holocaust survivor stories in one form or another. This year she released a new book entitled Holocaust Triology.
Here is one of the extracts taken from Julia Pascal’s play Dybuk:
[extract from dybuk]
After a break Bonnie Greer, continued the event with readings from her works, – which included extracts from her first novel Hanging by her Teeth, and passages from a series of forthcoming short stories of hers. These stories deal with conflicting identities of African American women at locations outside the United States. The following extracts were read from the story called “A Frivolous Girl”, which features the confrontation of a young African American teenager with her first visit to Africa:
[extract from a very frivolous girl]
The presentations of the two play writers, were followed by an open discussion, which centred on the question of the possibility of picturing the black experience along side the Jewish and vice versa.
This is Eugenie (say u-gine) Dodd a child survivor, who was inspiration to a forthcoming play called Dora:
“I think the experience is very different! There is the Jewish Experience and there is the black experience and I am not sure that they are exactly the same because there is a very, very different cultural background to them. And maybe you generalise it too much. You could say both of them are experiences of displaced people. But there is much more to it than that.”
Boonie Greer responded to Eugenie Dodd, referring to her father who served in the then still segregated US Army:
“I do have to go back to my dad. If my dad could make a link in himself. I mean he was a guy who saw lynching, forced to see lynching – forced to see a lynching, when he was six year old -the clan made them all watch this man lynch. And he was in the segregated army in the United States. If he could feel that this related to him on some level, and when he went to that concentration camp, that’s what he reported to us. Of course the particularities are absolutely different.”
[Dodd] “But then you see there is also the visual aspect of it. You are black, I might be Jewish! When in the Dybuk there is this aspect of: Do I disclose that I am Jewish, Do I say so, am I embarrassed about being Jewish? You can’t do that! That’s choice!”
This was Eugenie Dodd answering Bonnie Greer’s reflection. Julia Pascal challenged the point about Jewish invisibility, remembering experiences whilst playing in France:
“Personally I know. In France I was taken to be an Arab. So I had quite a lot of race hatred. That’s the nearest I can get! That was my personal journey into that. And the fact that Bonnie was in it: we are the same generation, and lived through certain things. That for me was my way to do that.”
So are the Jewish and the Black experiences the same? If Julia Pascal can feel racism for being mistaken to be an Arab in some racist corners of France, is it possible for a black person to understand the Jewish experience. Bonnie Greer again:
You have to hear me say to you that I can empathise. You see that’s the first thing that I am saying., and the rest of it is detail! You know what I mean? We have to work it out some kind of way. And I am not a spokes-person for anybody. All oppressed people have a commonality with that experience. The details and particulars are everybody’s details and particulars. I don’t deny that at all. But I am saying that there are things that I understand. And the things that I understand are the things that we should meet on, we should talk about, we should built on! And I understand everything because everything has happened to black people, so I understand it all! Except the thing is, what you chose and how you function. It is how we can start to work to build the things that we need to build! There is memory with a big M and there is memory with a little M. And I have on my wall pictures all the way back to my great great great great grand mother, little photos. One of them was a slave! And always through our family they talked about this experience. The waiting at the night for the door, the lynchings, the living in quarters where you weren’t fed, going out to work without any kind of recompense, the total fear that people lived into and people still live in many parts of the South, even as I speak. That memory, which happens to do with oppression, an art or creative person can use that, to pit into a particular mode. The rest of it, of course you check with the experts, with people who actually lived through it, with people who’ve gone through the particular thing that you’re writing on. But that general memory is something you can pull back from your own experience. And anyone who comes from an experience, an in fact anyone who doesn’t come from an experience of being particularly oppressed, if you work it through creatively, you can find a general moment that you can then use. So I feel that I was able to create that. Because I had from my own history those same experiences in general, not in particular but in general!
Bonnie Greer. Having established that there was a similarity in the perception of the experiences, what is the whole purpose of these representations? A member of the audience opened up the debate:
“ I am coming from a slightly different perspective. I was interested in what you were saying about memories. The minute you were talking about memory and relating memories and sharing memories is making it impossible for the denial of those memories. And that’s what I find key in what you’re all saying is how do we prevent that denial. I work with children who have been abused. And there is so much about denial that that actually happens. So much about denying themselves that it actually happened to them. There comes a point when they can talk about it, which may not be for many years and what we have to do is to equip ourselves against that denial. That is what removes stereotyping, that is what fights prejudices, that’s the way to tackle. “
In this light the point about traumatic collective experiences, their memory and the prevention of their denial become very acutely relevant. Bonnie Greer put it like that:
“We can remember and we can make words. So as long as we keep making language, and with our bodies and with our minds and with our voices, we can at least pass on the legacy of not denying! It’s true for black people. It’s what black people try to get, all of us in the Diaspora, the African Diaspora, really try to get the rest of the world to see, is not denying, not deny what happened. And you are doing this as well, Jewish people: We must stop denying, and there is so much denial going on. That’s the key.”
In her concluding words Julia Pascal added a contemporary example of such denial. Referring to the holocaust revisionist David Irving, who has been in various trials for holocaust denial, including countries such as Australia, Germany and recently Great Britain, she stated:
“Yeah, I just bring it back to the David Irving case. The whole thesis of that denial is to deny that Hitler knew what was going on, and that is why today is important and why we are connected, cause it’s the same story – from them – and that’s why it is terribly important why we go on making the work. What else can we do? We the next generation, who didn’t know it directly, but it’s so close to us, it’s our duty to tell those stories in any way we can!”
produced for DW in 1999 – full transcript follows – all rights reserved!
The implications for these words are grand. Not only for the Jewish and African Diasporas. Denial of the existence of suffering equally applies to millions and millions of forgotten souls wherever we live or you may listen, who bear evidence to the worst in human nature. All to quote Bonnie Greer, are different in particular but the human traumas and nightmares, are equal in general.
For Deutsche Welle, I am Daniel Zylbersztajn from London.
© 2000 DeutscheWelle
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
(feature originally aired in 1998 on Cool, Deutsche Welle)
Produced, presented and recorded by Daniel Zylbersztajn
In this feature I take a look at people who are refugees in Great Britain and who continue their sports career here.
An audio-journey. Originally aired 1998 on London Sound Radio, – one of the first five Community Radio Stations with a UK Licence to broadcast. Recorded and produced by Daniel Zylbersztajn
Recorded on Marantz DAT, edited on SADIE
Date back-dated to original airing.