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Professor Simon Piasecki speaks at EU Parliament

Head of Drama, Dance, Performance and Music Professor Simon Piasecki was invited to speak at the European Parliament in Brussels as part of World Refugee Day.

Professor Piasecki spoke at the Promoting Peace, Fighting Youth Radicalization, Fostering a Welcoming Europe event, which was organised by the Anti-Racism and Diversity Intergroup.

Building on his Tedx talk about the human capacity for altruism, Professor Piasecki focused on the adaptation of memory in theatre to promote a welcoming Europe, framing the presentation on the production Flight to Arras, which was directed by his wife Dr Shelley Piasecka.

Dr Piasecka also addressed attendees, discussing the positive use of drama in tackling radicalisation and shifting perceptions of ‘the other’.

Professor Piasecki said: “We were honoured to be presenting alongside Ms Figen Murray, an extraordinary mother who lost her son in the Manchester Arena attack and is now an anti-radicalisation/anti-Islamophobia activist.

“The event provided an important opportunity to positively inform parliamentary discussion of these issues.”

Aiming to raise awareness of the many initiatives promoting peace and preventing youth radicalisation through a holistic and community based approach, the event explored the root causes of radicalisation.