Adapting Testimonies of Survivors of Mass Atrocity Crimes for Performance: A Law and Drama Approach

Agata Fijalkowski, Jane Arnfield

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


The collaboration between Law and Drama is a powerful means to bring individuals together in times of crises creating empathy and dialogue. Mike Alfreds argues that ‘[i]f theatre has a purpose, I believe it is this: the revelation and confirmation of the heights, depths and breadth, the multi-dimensional richness, of our shared humanity’ (19). At the heart of our project is the medium of testimony. Testimonies contain enduring messages of hope. Testimonies also preserve a record, which can challenge the perceived notion of a criminal trial.[1]

Our partnership focuses on sourced (auto) biographical accounts from WWII; our respective research hones in on adaptions of testimony and memoir. Fijalkowski’s work contributes to ongoing socio-legal research concerning judicial/legal biographies.[2] Arnfield’s can be situated under Carol Martin’s terminology Theatre of the Real, whereby ‘[r]ecording ourselves, recreating our experiences and our narrative accounts of history, and remembering and memorialising the events of our own time and other times are central preoccupations of Theatre of the Real’.
Original languageEnglish
Specialist publicationSocio-Legal Studies Association Blog
PublisherSocio-Legal Studies Association
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jun 2021


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