20 years after the attacks of September 11, 2001: artists come back to the effects

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20 years after the attacks of September 11, 2001, which claimed the lives of thousands of Americans, Quebec artists of North African origin look back at the effects of racism they have since been victims of in a sobering web series.

We have to learn to live together as brothers, otherwise we will all die together like idiots.

Martin Luther King

Remember, 20 years ago, two planes were heading towards the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York. At the time, we thought it was an accident, but when the second plane took the same path as the first, it was now clear that we were dealing with an attack. This was committed by the Islamic group Al-Qaeda which is a group of people with religious ideas qualified as extremists. This resulted in several deaths, injuries and missing.

To commemorate this sad anniversary, several Quebec artists, including Safia Nolin, Mehdi Bousaidan and the musician Chafiik, present as part of a web series their lives before and after September 11, 2001. In fact, following this tragedy, people of Arab origin experienced difficult situations. The series seeks to demonstrate the effects, even after all these years. For example, the comedian Mehdi Bousaidan tells how he was overpowered and handcuffed by the authorities during his visit to the National School of Humor in Montreal because a woman denounced a Maghreb who entered with a big bag. This article from La Presse tells us more.  

These are of course not the only people who have been credited with bad intentions as a result of the terrible events. Have you ever witnessed situations where someone had racist behavior towards another person? 

Racism: Is it justified to be afraid of people who have other origins?

In the article, we see that the webseries deals with the lived experiences of artists who, by their origins, have attracted judgments and fear from certain people. What should we think of it? Is it justified to be afraid of people who have other origins? Is this a demonstration of racism? This is a good question to ask the students in the group.

To enrich the reflection, we can use a collaborative notes application such as Jamboard, Padlet or Whiteboard. Their tools allow you to add style notes post-its or icons to organize the information well! This way all students can have their say and it can lead the discussion, whether oral or written. 

In this guide

Disciplines: Ethics and religious culture / French
Degree: 3rd cycle of primary and 1st cycle of secondary

Dimensions of digital competence: 

  • Producing content with digital
  • Innovate and be creative with digital 
  • Develop and mobilize your information culture 
  • Harnessing the potential of digital technology for learning 

Elements of the program: 

  • Reflect on ethical questions
  • Practice dialogue


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