Advance Praise for Moving-With & Moving-Through Homelands, Languages & Memory: An Arts-Based Walkography

In: Moving-With & Moving-Through Homelands, Languages & Memory
Alexandra J. Lasczik Cutcher
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Like no other book I have ever read, Alexandra J. Lasczik Cutcher’s Moving-With & Moving-Through Homelands, Languages & Memory: An Arts-based Walkography is an aesthetic and academic wonder! Not only is the book about moving in complex and diverse ways, but it is intensely and profoundly moving. In a compelling performance of truth and trust, Lexi holds her heart in her hands and invites others to know her so we can know ourselves and one another with the kind of intimacy and intricacy that transcends bias, racism, and hatred. This book is a visual, verbal, and visceral exploration of language, family, place, migration, diaspora, travel, loss, identity, and history. Through poetry, photography, life writing, and thoughtful ruminations on both historical and contemporary narratives of atrocity, loss, and estrangement, Lexi reminds us that art, scholarship, and pedagogy are inextricably committed to activism and transformation. Above all, Lexi calls us to learn to live well with hope and love in the world.

– Carl Leggo, Poet and Professor, University of British Columbia

In Moving-With & Moving-Through Homelands, Languages and Memory, we turn the pages to the next layers of complexity in the lived journey of Alexandra Lasczik Cutcher as she invites us to walk through space and time of her/stories. While Lasczik Cutcher’s scholarly research frames her intuitive journey through Eastern Europe, her images and poetry awaken and connect us to the deepest of emotions of what it means to long, and belong. These contextual representations embody the relational contours of our own stories. Her (re)search troubles one’s sense of identity, questions who is the foreigner, the fragility of place, and the mystery of resilience. We are reminded of the events of anti-migration sentiment, the rebuilding of ethnic walls and the sadness of violence that is sweeping through Europe and the rest of the world. The rawness of the photographs, and the visual experience of the poetry moving across the page swell inside us; tears fall as we consider what makes us human. This book speaks to the “wonderer and wanderer” in all of us and creates spaces of familial remembrances and interconnections. Lasczik Cutcher’s words and images lingered long after I finished reading. I found myself returning to certain images and poems, rereading her astute lens on present day events. This stunning visual and textual narrative challenges thinking, embraces the heart and nourishes the aesthetic soul. I did not want it to end.

– Marni J. Binder, Associate Professor, Ryerson University

Stunning, simply stunning. Alexandra Lasczik Cutcher has created a breathtaking work of scholarship that is evocative and provocative, poetic and artistic, and perhaps most of all, captivating and challenging. She calls us into her walkography and we are spellbound – walking with her through her homelands, memories and languages. The interruptions of poems and images give pause as we take a breath to linger in our own stories, before we venture forward again, to breathe in again the images and histories, past and present. The entire book is an event, an encounter, a walking-with and walking-through as we come to understand what it means to come home to a place we’ve never lived before. Stunning, simply stunning.

– Rita L. Irwin, Professor, Art Education, Distinguished University Scholar, The University of British Columbia
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