Voice4Thought Festival: Digital Radicalization

After last year’s successful edition, Voice4Thought is back with the third edition of its annual festival V4T @Leiden. The program brings together voices from the fields of arts, education, activism and the academic world on this year’s central theme, Digital Radicalization. The program features guests from Cameroon, Chad, Senegal and the Netherlands.

Why is our world polarizing so quickly, and why is it associated with hostility, incomprehension and violence? What role does religion, politics or racism play? And what is the role of digitization? Is the smartphone a polarizing technology? V4T @Leiden wants to start a dialogue and reflect on what radicalization in this time actually means. The audience is challenged to critically reflect on the current issues in our society, both in the Netherlands, Africa and worldwide. During the round table and panel discussions, emphasis is placed on the academic and activist debate, while in the other parts the center of gravity is more towards the artistic and activist form.

The festival will premier a documentary on Boko Haram; the screening in Kijkhuis will be introduced to create a clear context and followed by a Q&A with the filmmakers. In the afternoon, in collaboration with LeidenGlobal, a film will be presented to Leiden’s secondary school students and other interested parties.

During the round table and the panel discussion on ICTs and processes of radicalization in the Netherlands, academics, artists, policy staff, journalists, students and the public participate. This takes place in the beautiful surroundings of Leiden University. The blogging workshop addresses the role of the new digital as well as the old media in the radicalization process.
The closing concert in the music venue of Gebr. De Nobel will be leading prominent engaged musicians. The artists include: Croquemort (slam artist representing Iyana, a civilian movement from Chad), Fou Malade (rapper representing Y’en A Marre, civic movement from Senegal), Lydoll (Cameroon, human rights activist and slam artist) and Mtato Did’s (singer/guitarist from Chad). The musicians will also participate in the launch of the V4T record label, earlier that day.

The theme of radicalization is also central to other activities of V4T, such as the forthcoming book about radicalization in West and Central Africa which V4T was commissioned to write by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Another example was the Facebook presentation about the Dutch parliamentary election by the N*gga & da Terrorist duo, a migrant and a refugee speaking and debating about sensitive issues in our society, such as racism, radicalization and “being different”. The discussion is also continued in festivals in Chad (V4T @N’Djam in October) and Senegal (V4T @Dakar in November).

View the festival program here

Date, time and location

23 September 2017 to 29 September 2017