Home, Belonging & Language

A day of exploring

27 July 2018, 9:00 – 18:00, King’s College London

Free and open to everyone, but tickets are limited: Please book here.

(c) Briony Campbell

We live in a society built on migration where many languages are spoken and where many people feel they belong to more than one place (be that the Welsh village where they grew up and the big city they moved to as adults, or the Indian capital their parents left in favour of the European village where they spent their childhood).

With the opportunities and pressures of globalisation and in times of unprecedented economic and forced migration, notions of ‘home’ are becoming more fluid. The traditional idea of ‘home’ as a fixed, defined place that can easily be named, may, indeed, be crumbling. How do we each configure our own understanding of what home means, of what belonging means? How are ‘home’ and ‘belonging’ constructed in politics or in public discourse? How are home or belonging articulated through language? What is lost or gained in translation?

This day of exploration combined group analytical methods like a large group session with talks and presentations by our invited speakers as well as a practical workshop and an open forum. Speakers included experts and practitioners from a variety of disciplines as we set out to examine ‘home’ and ‘belonging’ from different angles and perspectives from group-analysis, via literary studies, fine arts and (arts) activism to translation theory and practice. Through the interactive formats of the large group at the beginning of the day, the workshop in the middle and the open forum at the end, everyone was able to join the discussion and take a stake in what home and belonging mean.

Attendees/participants were also warmly invited to the opening of the exhibition ‘Home on the Move’ at the National Poetry Library on the evening of 26 July, where there was also an opportunity to meet some of the artists, poets and translators.


Teodor Ajder (editor of trilingual migrant magazine Mamaliga, Warsaw), Maria-José Blanco (group work conductor), Briony Campbell (filmmaker and photographer), Manuela Perteghella & Ricarda Vidal (curators of Talking Transformations/ King’s College London), Zuzanna Janin (artist/filmmaker), Joanna Kosmalska (Polish writers in Britain, University of Lodz), Maria McLintock (curator of System of Systems ), Loredana Polezzi (Translation Studies, University of Cardiff)

Organisers: Ricarda Vidal, Manuela Perteghella, Maria-José Blanco

Thursday, 26th July

7.30pm-9.30pm Exhibition opening at The National Poetry Library with poetry readings and multilingual performance. 
National Poetry Library, Level 5, Blue Side, Royal Festival Hall Southbank Centre, London SE1 8XX
FREE, but places are limited – please book your ticket here

Friday 27th July 2018 

9.00am-6.00pm A Day of Exploring
King’s College London, Room 1.62, Franklin-Wilkins Building,
Waterloo Campus, London SE1 9NH


9.00-9.30 Registration

9.30-10.30 Large group (led by Maria-José Blanco)

10.30-11.00 Coffees

11.00 -12.00 Panel 1:

  • Loredana Polezzi on translation and migration
  • Joanna Kosmalska on the transnational home in Polish literature
  • Q&A

12.00-13.00 Lunch (not provided)

13.00-14.00 Panel 2:

  • Zuzanna Janin on making art and making a home between London and Warsaw
  • Briony Campbell on home-making across racial and continental borders
  • Q&A

14.00-15.30 Workshop on translating ‘home’
(led by Manuela Perteghella & Ricarda Vidal) with coffees

15.30-16.30 Panel 3:

  • Teodor Ajder on translation, migration and the migrant’s voice
  • Maria McLintock on bureaucracy, political power and asylum seekers
  • Q&A

Open Forum and large group (led by Maria-José Blanco)
with wine reception

Click here for full programme


Sponsored by the Department of Culture, Media & Creative Industries and the Faculty of Arts and Humanities, King’s College London, and the Polish Cultural Institute London.