Cecilia Parsberg.
Cecilia Parsberg.

Cecilia Parsberg holds a PhD in Fine Arts in Visual Arts from Lund University. Her doctoral dissertation ”How do you become a successful beggar in Sweden?” An inquiry into the images of begging and giving in Sweden 2011-2016, consists of nine text chapters and six staged works. It is designed as an e-book with moving image and sound. It is published at: www.beggingandgiving.se. She works as a freelance artist based in Stockholm.


”We are losers and you have to learn from us”

This is a quotation of Kefah, a poet living in the Israeli-occupied territories on the West Bank.

The community of wall builders provides the basis for a production of knowledge that is disseminated, as is the community of the occupied. Kefah calls himself and his occupied community – which is surrounded by the wall – losers. Because they have been defeated by a victorious power. But the winners don’t possess all of the knowledge. The sentence: ”We are losers and you have to learn from us” demarcates a border, but the meaning opens up a space – a space for possible action.

I will show a filmed chorus dialogue from the next chapter in my dissertation: The Chorus of Begging consists of people who usually beg on the streets. The Chorus of Giving consists of people who usually give to those who beg on the streets. They sang without words. Using their own individual voices as well as their collective chorus voice they sang the feelings between them. Both choruses are arranged in the same formation. They were filmed. For the viewer of this video installation the setting gives no clues to indicate which chorus is which.  We share an existence on the streets but we’re separated by a chasm – we don’t share it. 

Full programme of the symposium "Heritage and Borders".