In the course of making Human Flow, his epic feature documentary about the global refugee crisis, the artist Ai Weiwei and his collaborators interviewed more than 600 refugees, aid workers, doctors, and others working with refugees in twenty-three countries around the world. A handful of those interviews were included in the film. This book presents one hundred of these conversations in their entirety, providing compelling first-person stories of the lives of refugees.
Speaking in their own words, refugees give voice to their experiences of migrating across borders, living in refugee camps for months or years, and struggling to rebuild their lives in unfamiliar and uncertain surroundings. They talk about the dire circumstances that drove them to migrate, whether war, famine, or persecution; the hardships they face; and their hopes and fears for the future. In the words of Atiq, an Afghan in his early twenties staying at a refugee camp in Greece, “Nobody in the world wants to leave his country. But there’s no way for people to live in that place.”
Complete with photographs taken by Ai Weiwei while filming Human Flow, this book provides a powerful and moving account of the most urgent humanitarian crisis of our time.