Francis Seeck

Advocating for minority rights around the world

After fighting stage fright Francis Seeck (artist name Franz Brötchen) starting performing their poems, rants and short stories on different stages and at rallies in Berlin in 2013. Franz Brötchen shouts outs or whispers Spoken Word pieces concerning their identity as genderqueer, growing up with a pathologized single mum in a poverty/ working class neighboorhood, grief and injustice. Their biggest performance was at the Berlin Mad and Disibility pride where they performed at a big rally in front of 500 people. 

When Francis is not on stage they are in the Masters program Social and Cultural Anthropology at Humboldt-University Berlin, with a focus on queer/ gender studies, intersectionality and postcolonial studies. They are currently working on their Master thesis concerning the right to mourn/ grief, conducting an intersectional ethnographic study concerning funerals organized by the German Health department for people who die poor and without relatives. Francis is also a research assistant in the project "Affective Masculinities and social transformation" and is volunteering and is member of the advisory board of an lgbtq rights group (ABQueer) in Berlin, where they facilitate workshops in public school concerning lgbtq topics with an intersectional approach.

Francis already has a longer history of activism. After Francis completed high school, Action Reconciliation Service for Peace, a German peace organization, offered them the opportunity to serve as a full-time volunteer with the InterReligious Task Force on Central America in the United States. Francis jumped at the opportunity and moved to Cleveland, Ohio, where they lobbied members of Congress to confront human right abuses in Central America and Colombia. Francis also completed the Humanity in Action Fellowship program in Poland in 2010, as well as the Lantos-HIA Congressional Fellowship in Washington, DC. As a congressional Fellow, they worked in the office of Congresswoman Grace Napolitano, a Mexican-American who represents a mostly Latino district in East Los Angeles. The Fellowship allowed Francis to gain valuable insight into the work of the Hispanic caucus and the committees on international relations, immigration and natural resources. Francis has also participated in the semester-long “Transforming Communities and Public Policy Program” at American University in Washington, DC, and they have spent two years at the Anne Frank Center in Berlin, facilitating weekly educational workshops with school classes about the history of the Holocaust and discrimination today. While volunteering with Cenderos in 2012/2013, an organization by immigrants from Nicaragua in Costa Rica, they have become involved in Beso Diverso, a queer collective in San José, Costa Rica that spreads awareness about homophobia in Costa Rica. 

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"I found solidarity with disadvantaged groups...and decided to fight for justice in the face of adversity."