“I believe the world out there will hear it and the suffering will end soon”: Witnessing Refugee Suffering | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online


This paper is based on my experiences with meeting those who are both eyewitnesses and victims of violence committed at the European border - refugees heading to Europe during and after the “long summer of migration” in 2015. Over those years I tried to collect testimonies of the victims of border violence and war atrocities, mainly to search for the ways in which the media represents their stories in the public space. Based on my stays among border crossers along the Western Balkan (migration) route I will present the limits and possibilities of a visual representation of refugees´ testimonies. Through auto-ethnography I will subsequently apply the concept of witnessing to my experience of “being there”, which proved to be crucial for entering public debates when being identified with authentic voices of voiceless refugees. In the conclusion, I will argue that this moment moves us (as researchers) to the position of implicated subjects who take part in the imaginary war taking place in the fields of politics and humanitarianism.


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