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Unwanted Images: Documentaries on the Syrian war front and the contemporary refuge

Grant number: 22/06077-4
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2022
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Arts - Cinema
Principal Investigator:Ana Carolina de Moura Delfim Maciel
Grantee:Mariana Teixeira Elias
Host Institution: Instituto de Artes (IA). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil


This research project will contribute to the delimitation of a new cinematographic style in the field of documentaries, that is, films with the theme of contemporary refuge made by the subjects themselves in refuge/forced displacement. To this end, we take as a starting point a filmic corpus composed of three documentaries made by Syrian filmmakers - refugees and exiles - that narrate in a testimonial way the catastrophe of the Syrian war and the consequent mass displacement triggered by it. Taking into account that the filmmakers involved in such narratives sought humanitarian refuge in other nations, and relating to this fact the idea that refugees are considered "undesirable people" in the contemporary geopolitical context (AGIER, 2008), we assume that -just like the subjects that produce them-, their images are also "undesirable". Something that becomes evident when we analyze the distribution and dissemination of these films and we are faced with the timid circulation and, consequently, the little visibility they achieve. The research is articulated above all by the analysis of the selected documentaries, a filmic corpus that gives a place of speech to the victims themselves, taking into consideration the respective historical contexts in which the images were produced and the geopolitical aspects linked to contemporary refuge, as well as reflections elaborated from a bibliographic review pertinent to the proposed theme, collaborating to the delimitation of a cinematographic style with the refuge theme.

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