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Sorgente Research Project
Dublin, Ireland


Sorgente is a research project which seeks to engage refugees, migrants and their teachers in performative language pedagogy while exploring themes such as motivation to belong, identity and language, and the development of ethical imagination.

The project also incorporates embodied, arts-based research methods such as life-drawing, digital storytelling, creative writing, movement and improvisation. Sorgente was inspired by the beautiful illustrations from the book "Migrations: Open Hearts, Open Borders". (As featured on this page). In the collection, Shawn Tan writes: “All migration is an act of imagination, a flight of the imagination.” We believe this is also true of learning a new language.


Sorgente has several international members who were unfortunately unable to join us in Ireland due to Covid restrictions. Led by Dr. Erika Piazzoli ( those of us based in Ireland took part in facilitating a series of workshops with young refugee and migrant students learning English as a second language in inner-city Dublin. The workshops explored English as a second language through music, dance, improvisation, voice work, script work, process drama and embodiment. 

In my dual role as workshop facilitator (exploring English through improvisation, scene study and embodied grammar) and research assistant (observing and recording data while my colleagues facilitated their workshops) I learned so much and uncovered a dozen more questions in the process! The project is still ongoing and I cannot wait to dig deeper into our data and to build upon what we have learned so far.


Research Partners

The Migrant Access Programme, administered by the Youth and Education Service (YES) for Refugees and Migrants. 

Youthreach, a further education programme for early school-leavers .

Both services are run by the City of Dublin Education and Training Board (CDETB)

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