Stories from the field

In this section, you will find a selection of stories and updates from the field, as well as photographs and video clips from the researchers’ scoping and field visits to Bosnia-Herzegovina, Colombia and Uganda.

Stories:

The importance of a hug

Description
By Professor Janine Natalya Clark.

Of Idioms, Metaphors and Translations

Description
Dr Eunice Otuko Apio reports on the role that language has played in CSRS fieldwork, discussing the importance of adapting the project ideas for varying cultures; use of idioms and metaphors; and issues surrounding translation.

The Ugandan Heart

Description
Following the CSRS field trip to Uganda, Dr Janine Natalya Clark explores how reference to the 'heart' has resonated throughout conversations with victims and survivors, and applies the theme to a wider context of transitional justice and reconciliation in Uganda.

How Long It Takes a Tree to Heal

Description
Dr Yoana Fernanda Nieto Valdivieso considers the use of trees as a metaphor for endurance, exploring how their ecosystems can represent the way in which communities are affected by conflict and how transitional justice processes might address this.

Resilience and Faith

Description
A reflection on faith, justice and resilience from the viewpoint of a mother – Dr Janine Natalya Clark tells the story of Angelina, the mother of a girl who was abducted by the Lord's Resistance Army in northern Uganda, whose faith and belief in forgiveness has helped her in moving forward.

Processes of Healing

Description
Dr Janine Natalya Clark considers the process of healing, reflecting upon survivors' journeys towards recovery within the community of Barlonyo in Uganda.

Where Roads Lead

Description
Using Uganda's busy roads as a metaphor, Dr Janine Natalya Clark looks at the journey of the country's transitional justice process. She reports on how victims face stigmatisation when reintegrated into their communities, and suggests that a holistic approach to the transitional justice process is needed to contextualise rehabilitation.

Food as a Site of Connectivity

Description
Dr Eunice Otuko Apio discusses the prominence of food and drink in their project meetings, and the role it plays in building relationships between researchers and research participants, and its possible connection with memories.

The Dance of the Paez

Description
Dr Eunice Otuko Apio recounts a performance by Paez people from the team's field trip to Colombia, describing their relationship with the environment and land, and reflecting on their resilience to the environmental degradation resulting from the conflict.

Layers of Storytelling

Description
Dr Janine Natalya Clark explores the theme of layers, reflecting upon the importance of using multiple research methods to holistically represent victims' experiences, and considers how the imminent truth commission in Colombia will approach the multi-layered stories of victims.

What Happened to the City of the Eternal Spring?

Description
Dr Yoana Fernanda Nieto Valdivieso describes her return to Medellin, where she lived for 14 years as a teenager and young adult, reflecting on how it has changed and exploring the link between the socio-political violence and environmental vulnerability within the region.

New Perspectives

Description
Dr Janine Natalya Clark reports on some of the ways in which various organizations in Colombia are seeking to give survivors of sexual violence a new perspective - and thus new resources for dealing with adversity.

Rape and Reconnecting with One's Body

Description
Dr Janine Natalya Clark tells the story of an Afro-Colombian woman, raped by FARC guerrillas, who has learned to love her body.

Dimensionality and Victimhood

Description
Dr. Janine Natalya Clark discusses resilience in a Colombian context, drawing comparisons with BiH and presenting some experiences of survivors of conflict-related sexual violence in the country.

Resilience in the Colombian Context

Description
Dr Janine Natalya Clark covers the opening days of the CSRS team's visit to Colombia and their meeting with journalist Jineth Bedoya Lima. She discusses resilience in the country and its relationship with the transitional justice process.

Of Objects, War and Endurance

Description
Dr Eunice Otuko Apio reflects on the CSRS research trip to BiH, commending the country's beauty but also drawing inspiration from the war-damaged infrastructure as a metaphor for survivor's resilience and reconciliation, and questioning the progress of transition.

Time and Transitional Justice

Description
Dr Janine Natalya Clark reflects on the research trip in BiH, explaining the process of the project questionnaire and exploring the complex relationship between reconciliation and time, and the importance of acknowledging the contemporary issues survivors face as a result of their experiences.

Some Reflections from Bosnia-Herzegovina

Description
Dr Yoana Fernanda Nieto Valdivieso reflects on the transitional period towards peace in Bosnia-Herzegovina following the CSRS Research Team's visit to BiH.

Emina's story

Description
A survivor of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Emina recently set up her own NGO bringing together local women to talk, to socialize and to use their various skills to make items such as soaps, liqueurs and clothing which they can subsequently sell.
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