THIRD SPACE is a place, where hybrid identifications are possible. A place, where dialogues
cultures evolve. A place, where new things come into existence.
Borders can separate cultures and societies. But what if we see them as meeting zones?
In today‘s globalized world, cultures are blending increasingly. What are the chances and the challenges of hybrid cultures?
Throughout three portraits, four young women give an insight into their hybrid worlds. All of them are influenced by different cultures. They express their thoughts and emotions through dance, poetry or fashion.
Dania grew up in Syria with Palestinian roots. Five years ago, she came to Switzerland. Since February, she’s studying political science in Zurich and is politically very engaged. Writing has always been an important part of her life, especially in the beginning when she came to Switzerland.
Andrina, a postindustrial- and process designer and photographer from Switzerland, and Sinalo, a stylist and trend forecaster from South Africa, realize their visions together in Cape Town. One and a half years ago, they first met in Cape Town when Andrina was looking for a roommate. As they moved in together, their friendship grew and soon they started to exchange creative references. When they realized they speak the same aesthetical language, they started to produce work under the image-creating duo named Space Agents.
The term Third Space is coined by the theorist Homi K. Bhabha. He describes the Third Space as a transition space, where post-colonial power relations and norms are subverted by political, aesthetic or everyday practices. A Third Space is a not a physical place, it’s much more a space where hybrid identifications are possible and where cultural transformations can happen. Third Spaces enable cultural hybridity, that is to say identities and practices, which perform difference without an assumed or imposed hierarchy.
“The theoretical recognition of the split-space of enunciation may open the way to conceptualising an international culture, based not on the exoticism of multiculturalism or the diversity of cultures, but on the inscription and articulation of culture‘s hybridity. It is the inbetween space that carries the burden of the meaning of culture, and by exploring this Third Space, we may elude the politics of polarity and emerge as the others of our selves.“
- Homi K. Bhabha, The Location of Culture
Source: Bhabha, H. K. (2012). Über kulturelle Hybridität. Wien: Verlag Turia + Kant.; Bhabha, H. K. (1994). The Location of Culture. London: Routledge
The Cambridge dictionary defines the word "hybrid" as "[...] anything that is a mixture of two or more things [...]". Originally, the term Hybridity evolved from biological and botanical origins. In the nineteenth century, the term Hybridity was used as a description of the crossing of people of different races. Hybridity in this context was put on a level with terms like "half-breed", "mongrel" or "bastard" and therefore had a negative connotation.
"In the nineteenth century it was used to refer to a physiological phenomenon; in the twentieth century it has been reactivated to describe a cultural one"
(Young, 1995, S. 5). The theorist Homi K. Bhabha reinvented the term.
"For Bhabha, hybridity becomes the moment in which the discourse of colonial authority loses its univocal grip on meaning and finds itself open to the trace of the language of the other, enabling the critic to trace complex movements of disarming alterity in the colonial text"
(Young, 1995, S. 21). He sees hybridization as an ongoing process where forms constantly revolve.
Source: Cambridge Dictionary (2019); Bhabha, H. K. (2012). Über kulturelle Hybridität. Wien: Verlag Turia + Kant; Young, R. J. C. (1995). Hybridity in Theory, Culture and Race. London: Routledge.
Head of Bachelor
Cast / Audiovisual Media