And, say, who goes there? And, say, who goes there? In such a mighty throng assembled, O declare? Byelorussians!
And what do those lean shoulders bear as load, Those hands stained dark with blood, those feet bast-sandal shod? All their grievance!
And to what place do they this grievance bear, And whither do they take it to declare? To the whole world!
And who schooled them thus, many million strong, Bear their grievance forth, roused them from slumbers long? Want and suffering!
And what is it, then, for which so long they pined, Scorned throughout the years, they, the deaf, the blind? To be called human! Yanka Kupala
Vladimir, 48 years old. Engineer
Pianists, video-maker, researchers, advertisers, students, journalist, colourist, make-up artist, actresses, political scientist, engineers, this series features Belarusians in France. Vladimir, Shandor, Anastasiya, Alesia, Inna, Vladislav, Anton, Alisa, Palina and Alexei have all come to France for various purposes. Some are political refugees who had to flee Belarus, while others grew up here. Most have come to pursue their studies or to be with a partner.
Alesia, 23 years old. Student in Advanced Systems and Robotics
This community, estimated at less than 600 members, is anxiously following the events that have shaken their country since the last presidential election campaign in August 2020. They are all acutely aware of the fact that they are far from Belarus, the "last dictatorship in Europe", while never before have so many of their fellow citizens taken the courage to protest against President Alexander Lukashenko, who has been firmly in power since 1994. The modest Belarusian diaspora is in the midst of a process of construction and hopes for change in Belarus.
Vlad, 24 years old. Real estate broker
Olga, 42 years old. Coach & Actress
Palina, 36 years old. Actress
Evgueni, 32 years old. 3D Programmer
Anastasiya, 31 years old. Real estate broker
Alena, 38 years old. Consultant
Ioulia, 33 years old. IT Engineer
Shandor, 42 years old. Entrepreneur
Inna, 52 years old. Advertiser
Marta, 31 years old. Make-up artist
Lidiya, 30 years old. Actress
Andrej, 25 years old. Anthropology student
Anna, 38 years old. Entrepreneur & CEO
Kyril, 31 years old. Game designer
Anastasiya, 32 years old. Digital marketing
Boris, 27 years old. Telecoms Engineer
Anna, 34 years old. Consultant
Alisa, 37 years old. Video calibrator
Ruslan, 36 years old. Teacher & Researcher
Alianksandra, 36 years old. Political scientist
Anton, 20 years old. Student at the Paris Conservatoire