THE MOBILE SITE AT THE FESTIVAL OF THE “HAUTS DE GARONNE”
2011/07/11 in Blog
The “Chantier Mobile” continued its urban and social exploration last Friday, establishing itself in Lormont’s Bois Fleuri park, where the music festival: les “Hauts de Garonne” was taking place.
The second station of the Mobile Site explored the theme: Unity in diversity, diversity in unity: what significance does the concept of diversity, widely employed in the political, social and cultural domains today, take on? It is around this vast question that the Mobile Site’s guests were able to share their points of view and experiences all afternoon.
CASTING OF INITIATIVES
Firstly, in its outdoor auditorium, the Mobile Site welcomed the participants of the Casting of Initiatives, resulting in the Wanted ad which was launched last June. Frederic Lefloc’h presented Coop’alpha, an activities cooperative which opened its doors in 2006 in Lormont and which proposes an accommodations service and free legal training to companies. It is characterized by the diversity of its offerings and tends to promote diversity, and synergy of different companies, which is mutually advantageous. Coop’alpha currently houses more than 90 businessmen/women and is in the process of creating a specialized construction branch.
Léonard Héliot then joined the Mobile Site to talk about Diversciné Productions, a Bordeaux audiovisual production association which works in institutions and events as well as image education. Léonard Héliot reported Friday on the educational aspect of the association, which is, notably, doing a workshop on the theme of cultural diversity with a SEGPA class from the Grand Parc neighborhood. This action’s objective is to bring aid in to school structures from the outside by proposing the children a free, neutral and federative means of expression about a subject which is often difficult to tackle.
Siti-Anrafa Said Ali in her turn, came to present the association, Esprit Métis which aims to develop and promote multiculturalism – social and cultural intermixing. She shared the different projects and actions through which the association works to encourage socio-cultural relations, and to defend values which foster open-mindedness, with the assembly. Esprit Métis publishes a magazine, which is now in its 10th issue, and which honors a different country each time. A bi-monthly radio show, broadcast since 2009 on Radio Campus Campus has expanded upon these portraits in an attempt to go beyond clichés, in a friendly atmosphere. In October, 2010, the association organized Métis et Vous, a culinary and musical event. Finally, it made a music video whose goal it was to teach the basics of sign language; a short film on deafness is currently being envisaged.
Joëlle Dubois, Esprit Métis’ creator’s sister, also known as Auntie Jo, concluded the Casting of Initiatives with the presentation of her blog Auntie Jo Funny Kitchen (winner of Elle’s best blog prize in 2009) which she prefers to see as a way to share a personal universe rather than as a simple culinary blog. The blog, a melting pot of origins and novelties, enables her to speak about countries, families and cultures through an everyday activity.
EXCHANGES: Unity in diversity or more exactly: diversity in unity
After playing a recording of Martin Luther King’s famous “I have a dream” speech, Station 2 exchanges started. Around the table of the Mobile Site were: Pierre de Gaétan Njikam Mouliom (Mission chief for the Mairie de Bordeaux for: diversity, citizenship, associative life, African affairs), Aude Soubirou (Doctor and professor of Political Sciences), Eric Cattelain (Doctor in Linguistics/Expert on Languages and Culture and Coordinator of the Conseil de la Diversité, creator of the universal writing UNIDEO), Cheikh Snow (anthropologist, musician; questions on diversity, intellectualism) as well as Auntie Jo and the association Esprit Métis.
The guests tried to define together what, for them, evoked diversity, a term which has become unclear and labile, around which the different participants work together to put into place a concrete work, a definition through projects, an action having the possibility of embodying a term which is tricky to discuss and often overused.
Eric Troussicot proposed to the guests to shed light on diversity by confronting it with other notions like identity (an occasion to question the French model and the concept of national identity); the idea of equality (which is not always systematically in agreement with actions taken in favor of diversity); or that of the transmission or memory of culture and values — which led naturally to the contribution of the poet, Gabriel Okoudji which followed.
Diversity had had its effect during this time of exchange at the Mobile Site: the points of view and experiences that were expounded upon went from political or legal conceptions of the different ideas presented, to life stories, by way of artistic expression, education projects or the most anecdotal everyday actions. Eric Troussicot punctuated the exchanges with quotes from Quand les murs tombent (Galaade editions, 2007) by Patrick Chamoiseau and Edouard Glissant, making homage in this way to the latter: “Creolization is a mixing of arts, or of languages, which produces the unexpected, a way of continually transforming a space, without getting lost, a space where dispersion allows us to unite, where shock and interference become creative.”
WORKSHOP: Reading of emotions by Gabriel Okoudji
The second station of the Mobile Site ended with a more intimate exchange around the work of Congolese poet, Gabriel “Mwènè” Okoudji (Prière aux ancêtres, Grand Prix Littéraire d’Afrique Noire 2010, Stèles du point du jour is his latest collection). Through his poetry, he leads a daily combat against the loss of the foundations of African culture and sees himself above all as an interpreter endlessly seeking to insure the transmission of this culture. During the exchange, Gabriel Okoudji demonstrated his conviction that poetry was a sort of song – emotions put into motion – by reading some of his poems. He then turned toward his audience to propose a “weaving of stories” to them, an unprecedented, small, but essential gesture to make this moment of sharing last “one hour, one month or ten years.”
Station 3 of the “Chantier Mobile” will take place Tuesday, July 12 starting at 3:00 p.m. in the Cantefrêne park, close to the power station of Ambès on the theme: Industrial transition/Nature-industry/The future of the peninsula.
photos : Pierre Planchenault