ECHO librarian Becka talks a little about the evolution of poetry in Iran and one of its most powerful 20th century voices Forough Farrokhzad is known as one of the most talented, innovative and controversial poets of 20th century Iran. In a tremendously short period Farrokhzad changed poetry, even literature, in Iran forever. Farrokhzad, repressedContinue reading “Forough Farrokhzad: mirror, thread and innovator”
The Greek government has passed a new law that effectively criminalises whistleblowing about the abuses of the refugee camps. it may be used to justify excluding groups from providing services to people living in the camps, and may have a chilling effect on information getting out about what is happening.
Our little mobile library has always lived in crisis. It was born in the tumultuous borderlands between Greece and Northern Macedonia in the summer of 2016. This year has brought another crisis – the coronavirus pandemic. But to survive, we need to confront the source of these crises.
Perhaps what’s most important is our shared commitment to the same ideals. We are diverse individuals coming together to support each other and our local communities. We find our comradeship not in a language or cultural background, but in recognition of our mutual need to work together.
The success of our little group of volunteers, working with no funds, no pay and across language barriers, begs the question why this appears to be so difficult for some big states.
Covid-19 has only made more stark the violence that the camp system does to people who live in it. There are better ways to house human beings. Malakasa camp is now in quarantine – arbitrary detention – again. A 61 year old man died this week. The camp system must end.
As the summer comes to an end, there are lots of questions about what ‘back to school’ is going to look like for a lot of the world. For the children that use the ECHO library, this has been an uncertain question for much longer.
“‘We cannot fight for our rights and our history as well as future until we are armed with weapons of criticism and dedicated consciousness.’”
There’s been a lot of talk of the ‘New Normal’ to describe how life has evolved or been interrupted as a result of the spread of Coronavirus. In some ways it’s a useful idea: a tool to help settle into the long-term repercussions of the virus; even a way to continue to take care of one another. But it’s also important that we don’t lose sight of what shouldn’t ever be considered ‘Normal’.
Whilst Greece has been in lockdown, we’ve been delivering meals to those stuck without them with the Athens Food Collective. How come it’s only the volunteer grassroots organisations that have been providing this support? What is mutual aid and why do people do it? And what pit-falls does our library fall into with the so-called charity industrial complex?