Refugees in Germany give Refreshing Response when Describing Typical Cliche Photographs.

A photographic cliche can be any image that we’re used to seeing and can interpret easily. At Phogotraphy we’ve previously covered thoughts about ‘Standing in Front of a Fridge‘ day which is an image parents and children are all too familiar with. But how do these cultural visual image cliches interpret to other cultures?

German newspaper Die Ziet recently conducted an unusual experiment by asking refugees to describe scenes from what would be a typical German cliche photograph. The answers they gave were not only eyeopening offering some clarity, the felt refreshing in their interpretation.

Below are three photographs from the experiment and a selection of answers given by refugees of two weeks or more from countries such as Syria and Afghanistan. Please note that answers have been translated from the native tongue to German, to English.

Picture 1: The infamous Berlin Wall Memorial
fahrrad-berliner-mauer
Cyclists at the Berlin Wall Memorial in Bernauer Strasse © dpa

“Here are two people ride on the bike. On a road. Otherwise I can not see anything there.”  – John C., 20, from Eritrea, for two weeks in Germany

“What should be here to see? A road, yes … a very good road without potholes. I do not know, here is something in particular? – Abdul R., 23, from Syria, for ten days in Germany

“A high wall. In Afghanistan, it looks like this everywhere. As protection for the house or for the factory.” – Fariba A., 37, from Afghanistan, for two years in Germany

“That was the Berlin Wall. Between East and West Germany.” – Hussein H., 35, from Syria, for five months in Germany

PICTURE 2: Ultra Right Wing Nationalist Party Demonstration
demo-pro-abschiebung
Demonstration by an ultra right wing party in Dortmund © Friedrich Stark

“These are people who demonstrate in the streets. What about it?” Edris O., 18, ​​from Afghanistan, for 15 days in Germany

“Is this a demonstration for freedom? In Eritrea it is dangerous to demonstrate.”
John C., 20, from Eritrea, for two weeks in Germany

“They think that we want to take away from them what they are afraid. They know nothing about the circumstances of why we are here.” Rita Al H., 47, from Syria, for two months in Germany

“You have prejudices. We should talk to them, help them to change their minds.”
Asmaa A., 46, from Syria, since one and a half months in Germany

“I make these people angry, who think that they are better than other people the moment are the European countries, the giants -. But what happens when it reproduces one day a crisis in Europe Perhaps then those people need to come to Africa? . – Ola A., 32, from Nigeria, for ten days in Germany

“The Nazis are. I’ve heard that they beat up a. You have to run away when you meet such a person.” – Mohammed J., 36, from Ghana, for six months in Germany

Picture 3: Girls wearing hot pants on a sunny day
frauen-kurze-hosen
Women in Hotpants © Matthias Merz / dpa

“That’s not our style.” – Rita Al H., 47, from Syria, for two months in Germany

“The women wear in Europe. I accept it, because the other indeed to accept me. For them, it should also be ok if Muslim women wear a hijab.” – Asmaa A., 46, from Syria, since one and a half months in Germany

“With my wife, I would want them to attract differently. But if I as a Muslim to travel in another country, I have to accept that.”
Ahmad Ali B., 20, from Syria, since one and a half months in Germany

“Oh, pretty! That there are in Syria, of course not. But looks good.” – Abdul R., 23, from Syria, for ten days in Germany

“You can see quite a lot. But for me, that’s fine. Germany is finally a democracy.” – Edris O., 18, ​​from Afghanistan, for 15 days in Germany


H/T Jörg M. Colberg

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s