Author Archives: Rita Sebestyén

Addicted to volunteering: two personal responses to Hungary’s refugee crisis

The spotlight was on Hungary in the summer of 2015: unable to cope with its refugee crisis on a governmental level, it was criticised worldwide for its hostile policy towards asylum seekers. On the other hand, streets and railway stations were filled with civilian helpers, who quickly organised themselves into informal groups and networks, secretly […]

Trampoline House: Space for Connection in Copenhagen

Starting from the end of May, against the backdrop of streets drowning in election posters, a series of cultural and artistic events emerge in the weather-wise frozen Copenhagen. It seems like all cultural operators and organizers are mobilizing themselves – and also the artists and their audience – by a more or less accidental common […]

‘Who the hell do you think you are?’ … almost fiction

‘We could all live on drugs, pee in our pants, drown in mud and puke sitting in the streets, covered with self-pity, if we really insist on indulging our hardships and scars, right?’ says R. No, he does not say it. He spits it, he yells, thunders it with his glass-blue eyes lightning through the […]

Great Beauty, Great Barriers: an Eastern European migrant in Australia’s north

Lilla Proics, a teacher and journalist in Hungary, arrived in Cairns, Australia last summer with her son and daughter. The town is a regional centre and attractive tourist spot in Australia’s north. With a fabulous coral reef in close proximity and rainforests all around, it seemed to be the perfect choice for a potential immigrant. […]

Stories that have never been told: refugee kids and an artist beyond words

Rasmus Sørinus Jensen is a Danish dancer, choreographer and filmmaker. Over the last five years he travelled throughout the Middle East with a Danish programme which engages children all around the world in storytelling in order to connect with each other. Jensen’s work aimed to encourage children in refugee camps to express themselves, adjust to […]

From Budondo to the Lund University

When a person arrives from Africa to Scandinavia, the narrative of their arrival – migration, asylum-seeking and escape; humiliation, danger and life-threatening paths – is often full of soreness and humanitarian catastrophes, to say the least. This interview outlines a positive story on overcoming difficulties: The story of Denis is a success story. A success […]

No dominance: an interview with Rozália Brestyánszki-Boros

Fourteen years ago a tall and slender young woman – with hippy-like long, straight hair that has still remained her distinctive mark – worked at the staging of an international performance of Antigone in Hungary. This young woman had a deep comprehension of the text and, at the same time, undertook all the practical tasks […]

Turning margin into centre

Vahid, a filmmaker and theatre director from Iran, is waiting for me frozen in front of a downtown Copenhagen café in early May. It is always too cold here, he says, it is impossible for him to get used to the weather conditions – though he has been living in Denmark for fourteen years now. We […]

Another Home for Us

There are Hungarians living in at least four countries outside of the borders of the country: Romania, Slovakia, Serbia and Ukraine. There are also smaller diaspora groups living in Slovenia and Croatia. The biggest community is the Transylvanian one in Romania which, after more than twenty years of massive emigration, still consists of almost 2 […]

The story of The Little Mermaid in Chinese

The population that now occupies the remains of the 13th century city centre of Elsinore, Denmark and its two coastal suburbs adds up to around 46,000 people. Apart from the majority ethnic Danish community, the town gives home to the region’s biggest Roma community as well as other migrants – many of them Muslim – […]