In August, something extraordinary happened in Belarus. Protests against the rigged presidential election and Aleksandr Lukashenka’s regime spread across the country and quickly widened into a mass mobilisation. Despite – or because of – violent repression, detentions and torture in prisons, a cross-section of society joined the protests, even in state factories and state-owned media. Images have played an important role in this ongoing mobilisation – as triggers of protests, framing devices of protests and sources of information. In a conversation with artists, photojournalists and political scientists, we will explore how images have influenced the protests, and how they have shaped the self-conception of the protesters and international responses.
- Volha Shukaila works a photojournalist for the largest independent Belarusian online media TUT.by. The Ministry of Information suspended mass media status for the outlet from October 1, 2020.
- Maxim Sarychau is freelancing for foreign media as a photojournalist and works in further projects on the edge of photography/journalism/art that focus on violence, human rights and history. He is also a co-founder of SHKLO - an online platform about Belarusian photography.
- Nadja Douglas is a political scientist and a researcher at ZOiS. Her current project focuses on the relationship between public initiatives and state power structures in the post-Soviet region.
- Gwendolyn Sasse is the Director of ZOiS. Her research focuses on post-communist transitions and comparative democratization and authoritarianism.