Muncie, IN: An overweight young woman kicked out of a choir group for her physical appearance; a gay man and a lesbian woman telling their stories of parental rejection; a Korean- American teenager's memories of being stereotyped—these are a few of the powerful real-life stories presented in a recent Ball State University student production.
"Let's Talk About...Discrimination," produced by students Chelsey Everheart and Dominic Schiferl, was inspired by a class assignment to use communication as a tool for social change. The two approached fellow students, asking them to share their personal experiences with discrimination. Schiferl created a link to Live Journal where people could submit poems or narratives while staying completely anonymous.
Dozens of narratives poured in. Schiferl was particularly moved by a gay student’s story of being beaten up at a local bar. "I couldn't believe something like that actually happened, so close by...that's a bar I've been to, that a lot of students hang out at," says Schiferl. "That's what makes these anonymous stories even more compelling- that most of them are local."
On Feb. 7, eight student actors performed 16 of these stories onstage. The show was such a hit it will be performed again Feb. 25, and the organizers will take the project to high schools all over Indiana. They also plan to keep the anonymous link open for people to continue to share their creative reflections about prejudice and discrimination.
If you would like to share your experience with discrimination, please visit http://letstalkguest.livejournal.com/ .
Have you or anyone you know started a conversation about discrimination in your community? How can theater or other art forms be used to generate dialogue about topics some people find uncomfortable?
Not In Our Town
I have a 13 year history as a spokesperson and activist with NIOT. I think you will have trouble finding a more valuable consciousness raising" organization in the USA. Fine people who have helped folks who do live in such rich equal rights communties as Berekeley ()home base for NIOT). If there has been an innapropriate incident in your community, you will immediately have friends and new colleagues who will lend a hand.
You got my attention with the
You got my attention with the leading statement. Great article!
Wounderful!!!!!. That's a a very good way to communicate other people waht is relly happening about discrimination, because in this way everybody coul share tehir experiences and see the ones from others so they begin to make a change in the world. I think the students who began this, did a really amazing job. It is not just a good way to make the people get involve in the organization, but also is a easy way to share the experiences without telling your name, if you don't want, because you can write poems or articles in which you show waht you want.
i supprot your cause and i
i supprot your cause and i really hope that the autorities listen to it
Let's talk about discrimination
There are all different kinds of discrimination over the world. Many people may have either personally experienced, or seen discrimination, but many have not. For those who have had such an experience, they might not know how it feels to be discriminated. Visualizing something with you own eyes are usually more powerful than just reading the words. So I think that what Chelsey Everheart and Dominic Schiferl did was great. They collected the real storys from those people who have personal experiences with discrimination, and had them been acted out by actors. They brought them into life, and I think this will be more effective and powerful than telling in words.
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