Other Story
Personal stories in a changing world, told by the people who are living the change.

About

Slow journalism & radical softness

Other Story is an ongoing documentary project, comprised of short films presenting personal stories in a world of monumental change. This is an alternative approach to news media, recording human testimonials based on heart-to-heart dialogues. Based in Copenhagen, and with active members from Denmark, Syria, the US, Afghanistan and England, Other Story seeks to move beyond easy categorization and facilitate the nuance, detail and sensitivity of the individual human story. 

Other Story collects stories and gathers voices. One human being at a time. One story at a time. Becoming a collection of personal stories of a changing world, told by the people who are living the change. Other Story is Slow Journalism and believes in Radical Softness.

In my opinion, “Other Story” is far more than a work of art, it is a humanitarian manifest, because it uses the film media to create an image of the reality and intense presence of the other person’s life, a reality which we are inclined to ignore, reject or even despise. The difference in culture and existential situation is overcome and over-bridged in the twinkling of an eye, and our escape into a safe ignorance is no longer a possibility.

— Ole Fogh Kirkeby, professor, Dr.Phil, Copenhagen Business School

Other Story was founded in 2015, as the influx of refugees and migrants to Europe reached staggering levels, dominating the news media and provoking contentious international political debate. Watching this drama unfold through European news reports, commonly portrayed through images of anonymous masses, cliché-ridden figures and narratives of conflict, the vision for Other Story came into existence as an alternative to this. With a desire to get close to the people behind the news-story and its categorizations, Other Story started recording human testimonials based on heart-to-heart dialogues. The Other Story films reveal a vast range of human expression – seriousness, humor, unmistakable life-force and heart-breaking absurdity. Today Other Story is engaging in dialogues with climate activists and scientists, indigenous communities, workers in rural Europe and refugees in different areas of the world.

To avoid dangerous climate change, a global-scale energy transformation is required. Yet to achieve such a seismic shift, climate communication research finds that this pragmatic activity needs to be underpinned by a meaningful new philosophy. However, still further research finds that for this new worldview or philosophical pivot to emerge, this itself relies upon authentic storytelling, and for those stories to be shared widely. For over 40,000 years, humans have relied upon storytelling to make sense of their world, adapt to change, flourish and survive hardship. Brain science now reaffirms what has been known within the arts and humanities sectors for a long time: the role of sensory and emotional knowing; human’s highly attuned ability to detect whether a storyteller is being ‘truthful,’ and the importance of the ‘social’ or communal role of storytelling. Not any story will do. Stories which resonate with people rely upon the truthfulness of the teller; the wider significance of the story and the craft of storytelling. This is why Other Story’s work excites me: they have the integrity, sensitivity and insight which is needed to identify and capture powerful stories. Stories could be the key to a turning point in humanities response to global warming.
— Elizabeth Boulton, PhD Candidate, Australian National University