Bangladesh in focus for third Fika Without Borders seminar

mka_474SASA organised its third Fika Without Borders lecture of 2016 on Thursday 10 March. This time the focus country was Bangladesh. Around 30 people gathered for the seminar. Venue: Usual place at the Lund University External Relations building basement, Stora Algatan 4, Lund. See the Youtube video of the seminar.

Morten Koch Andersen, researcher at Dignity, the Danish Institute Against Torture in Copenhagen lectured on how human rights documentation and reporting is a dangerous and difficult practice in Bangladesh. A key challenge in human rights work is how to identify victims and document violations. In his presentation Andersen investigated how human rights activists in Bangladesh assist survivors of human rights violations and document violations and show how human rights activism and documentation unfold at the intersection of global discourses, national politics and local power configurations. Each level condition and circumscribe the ways in which human rights documentation is carried out, set the limits for gathering of information and delimit what is made public.

The presentation illuminated how documentation is carried out by a variety of human rights actors; local activists, national NGO’s and journalists, according to individual rationalities and thresholds of importance and urgency that define whether a violent incident become a case of human right violation. Each actor chose what, and what not, to document and filters information according to the need of the victim and their families, the political situation and the position of the actor in society.  It is the process of filtering of information that determines how incidents of violence, abuse and transgression become human rights cases. Filtering is about the ways in which human rights activists perform their work documentation and reporting on human rights.

As usual, SASA provided fika consisting of South Asian snacks during the event, this time rajma (kidney beans) and potato curry.

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