YOU, RIVER OF MY TEARS
Miriam Stanke (1983, Germany) went to visit a remote mountainous area of Eastern Anatolia with the Munzur river and valley at its heart. This is Dersim, the historical heartland of the Kurdish Alevis or Kızılbaş, a very heterodox religious group that has been oppressed and attacked throughout the past centuries and is still fighting for its heritage. Remarkably, the word ‘Dersim’ is closely connected to ‘genocide’ and ‘resistance’ for most Kurds and Alevis in Turkey. In this project, Miriam Stanke aimed to capture glimpses of this society which, throughout history, had to struggle against the state. During the second half of the 20th century Dersim also became a melting pot of leftist political dissent and its mountains have served as a hideout for guerrilla groups which is also why the region has one of the highest concentrations of military presence in Turkey.