This Friday, Dr. Ampson Hagan is giving a talk entitled, “Sur témoignage et témoignage: witnessing, testimony, and documentary as humanitarian techniques of dissuasion” for the Anthropology Lecture Series.
The talk will be from 3.30 -4.30 pm in C103 McDonel Hall.
The zoom option is available for those who cannot attend in person. (https://msu.zoom.us/j/99146869800 Passcode: ANP@MSU)
Black migrants in Niger have, at public forums, provided testimony of their difficult and horrible experiences traveling through the Sahara. These accounts involve performances of truth and authenticity, intrinsic qualities of both testimony and witnessing (témoignage et témoignage). These affective experiences revolve around preconceived notions of truth, and expectations of normative or appropriate performances of victimhood. Documentary also emerges as a tool of migration management in Niger. Organizations deploy documentaries of migrants in crisis to show the difficulties that many have experienced on the journey through Niger to North Africa. Together, testimony, witnessing, and documentary represent humanitarian efforts to dissuade would-be migrants from embarking on unauthorized migration in order to prevent humanitarian emergency. As techniques of dissuasion, these tools also support the geopolitical goal of blocking and controlling African migration.