The Road to Nowhere – a print magazine and creative agency that celebrates writing, art, and photography about migration and diaspora – was launched by the Iraqi-British journalist Dalia Al-Dujaili in 2020. Three years later, it’s bigger than ever, launching its recent third volume with no less than 26 contributors, representing a variety of diasporas.
Coming at a vital time for conversations on diaspora and migration in the UK – which has seen the Tories roll out increasingly bleak anti-migrant legislation and condemn asylum seekers to “prison ships” – the new issue of the magazine aims to amplify creative voices across a range of identities and experiences.
“At its core,” Al-Dujaili writes in an editor’s letter, “The Road to Nowhere remains an exploration of neither simply the homeland nor the Western metropoles we migrate to, but of the power and joy of the spaces in-between.”
Shining a spotlight on this journey from the homeland to places of refuge and new homes are photographers including Nahwand Jaff and Nabil Tazi, who share their perspectives on Lebanon and Morocco, respectively. Kenneth Lam’s precarious arrangements, meanwhile, are meditations on the Hong Kong new builds that towered over his grandmother’s home.
Elsewhere, Olgac Bozalp’s photos document – in vivid colour and bold gestures – the lives of resettled migrants from the Middle East in Europe and America, while poet Charnjit Gill pays tribute to the contribution of Black Britons to one of the nation’s favourite pastimes and biggest cultural exports: football.
“Diaspora creatives have the superpowers of pluralism, with various cultures, languages, traditions and decades of ancestral knowledge at their disposal,” Al-Dujaili adds. “We know how to code switch, we understand the subtleties of time and place, we move between languages and customs as fluidly as water... The diaspora is the key to unlocking the future potential of culture. Without migration, we are sapped of cultural and creative ingenuity.”
Take a glimpse inside the pages of The Road to Nowhere in the gallery above. Order volume three here.