InDignity

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) provide a 15-year plan for the world, with the ultimate aim of ensuring “life in dignity for every person on the planet”. But what does life in dignity actually mean?  

The SDG agenda was initially known as the “Road to Dignity by 2030.” In early spring of 2015, while drafts of the SDGs were under final negotiation, Benedikt embarked on a search to better understand the meaning of dignity. Through an artistic process involving Hussein Khaddour, a dancer living in Damascus, Syria, she hoped to gain insights into what the agenda’s ultimate goal - “life in dignity for every person on the planet” - could mean. Along the way, she aimed to tell a story about Syria not found in mainstream media coverage. 

InDignity premiered at the Political Symposium of the European Forum Alpbach on 1st September 2015 and was also viewed via live-stream, especially by artists in Syria. High-level decision-makers from the UN and the European Commission were present. That day, hundreds of refugees arrived in Austria, and thousands followed in the next weeks. The response by the audience was emotional: a good portion of them were crying, and some observed that the work set the tone for a more honest and critical debate for the remainder of the symposium.

InDignity was covered in multiple newspapers and on the radio and a summary video was distributed via social media. On the invitation of the Austrian Ambassador, Benedikt and Khaddour subsequently performed InDignity and led workshops on the topic in China.

Detailed documentation HERE

Benedikt and Kahddour realized what is selfdom achieved: to express 

concrete philosophical and political insights through a very strong,

deeply moving and impressive dance performance.

 

 

Stephan Contius

Commissioner for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development; BMU