BY YASMIN FEDDA
Yasmin Fedda, director of the documentary Queens of Syria, explains the impact that storytelling can have on refugees and their audiences.
The right to self-expression is essential
Storytelling is important for all communities, not only refugees. However, in conflict and post-conflict zones, it can have a different significance. Syria is still deep in an active conflict, and its people still need outlets to share their experiences, also as a source of relief. These stories, regardless of the situation their tellers are in, can be about anything. What is important is that people have the opportunity to express themselves however they want to.
Having a platform can help the healing process
In 2013, I made a documentary, Queens of Syria. It follows the journey of a group of around 50 female refugees living in exile in Amman, Jordan. The documentary emphasises the bonds that the women make with each other over the process of workshops and rehearsals in the lead-up to a final performance of Euripides’ tragedy, The Trojan Women. The play is set over two thousand years ago, and, by working with an ancient text, re-interpreting it and drawing parallels with their own lives, the women produced something quite unique.