From March 21- 26, at the invitation of the cultural center the Champs Libres and the newspaper Le Monde, a number of Rennes-based high school and university students took part in the Nos futurs festival in the Breton capital. The festival is an opportunity to promote the voices of young people who help to energize the Breton capital and its surroundings, a land of social and cultural innovation.
It was within this context that Helene Touzé, Head of cultural activities of the CIREFE of Rennes 2 University was contacted. Together with Virginie Forestier, a teacher-researcher at the CIREFE, they were able to create a list of students who were interested in participating.
They were able to create two distinct artistic projects: the first called 'Portrait d'ici Portrait d'ailleurs' is a podcast that allow students to discuss at length their journeys of arriving and living in France; while the second is a sound notebook called 'D'où je viens ... pour aller où ?' (Where I'm from ... where I'm going). These are testimonies of young people living here, in Rennes, and coming from elsewhere, from different countries, from several continents. Their paths crossed in one place: the Centre International Rennais d'Études de Français pour Étrangers (CIREFE), a place of learning and intercultural exchange. Through this festival, they shared their thoughts on their journey, the courage it often takes to leave one's country and adapt to another culture, their life in France, their vision of life and the future, all rich experiences that they are happy to share with others.
The sound notebook: 'D'où je viens... pour aller où ?' is available here.
The 4 separate podcast testimonies are available below (in French).
Portraits d'ici, portraits d'ailleurs
- Participants of this project are students at Rennes 2 University and cultural animators at the CIREFE)
Tatiana is Colombian. She tells us with her humor and her contagious joie de vivre where she comes from and what led her to come and study in France. She explains why and how she had to leave her country to learn to love it. She also tells us what surprises her in France and her vision of the future, here or elsewhere.
Clémence was born in Ethiopia. At the age of 6, she arrived in France, where she and her family "adopted" each other. She tells us how she gradually became aware of the richness of her dual culture, of which she is now very proud. She tells us how her journey has led her to become involved at different levels. Clémence also talks about her confidence in youth which feeds her confidence in the future.
Herick comes from Brazil, where he grew up in the favelas of São Paulo. Driven by a strong desire to leave his neighborhood, his city and his country, he overcame many obstacles with courage to reach his goal. He now lives, works and studies in France, with the hope of becoming a French citizen and the objective of helping children and young people in difficulty, here or elsewhere, to enable them to break down the barriers that hinder their development and to believe in their dreams.
Majd was born in Yemen but her father's work as a Yemeni ambassador led her to travel from the age of 3 months. She lived in Jordan for several years, then in Yemen, before moving to Tunisia. The war then led Majd and her family to other countries, to Sweden and then to France, where she is now a refugee, as are her parents, brothers and sister. Majd shares here her reflections on her journey, her adaptation to different cultures, different languages, her relationship to her origins and her identity. She also talks about the need for solidarity, her vision of the future and the value she places on the present.