THE POPULAR EDUCATION NEWS
NO. 10 NOVEMBER 2003
Connecting popular and community-based educators and activists to resources for improving educational work in social movements against oppression and for democracy, sustainability, social justice, and peace.
A monthly newsletter about the Popular Education/Community Organizing Resources Collection in the Penny Lernoux Memorial Library at the Resource Center of the Americas, 3019 Minnehaha Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55406. It is a collection of practical materials for facilitators and practitioners to improve the educational work in our movements for democratic social change. The three main parts of the collection are 1) Materials in English, 2) Materials in Spanish, 3) Books by Paulo Freire some titles in Spanish. An annotated bibliography with links to where to purchase materials is at www.americas.org (follow library/popular education link).
TABLE OF CONTENTS
· REVIEWS OF THE MONTH - Ready for Action : A Popular Theatre Popular Education Manual
· OTHER POPULAR THEATER RESOURCES
· LINKS FOR INFO ON POPULAR THEATER
· LINKS TO POPULAR EDUCATION WEB SITES AND ON-LINE BOOKSTORES
· "WHAT IS POPULAR EDUCATION?" DEFINITION OF THE MONTH
REVIEWS OF THE MONTH
Ready for Action: A Popular Theatre Popular Education Manual by Jennifer Anderson, Jennifer Michol, Joshua Silverberg. Waterloo Public Interest Research Group (WPIRG), (Reprinted by the Catalyst Centre), 1994.
This is truly a wonderful book - a gem among many valuable items in the popular education and community organizing resource materials collection.
On one level you can know what the book is about from a formal description: This manual was written by the Enviromaniacs, a popular theatre group at the University of Waterloo in Ontario, in an effort to share knowledge and experience gained by the group in their many years of pop theatre work. It provides an overview of ideas, materials, and resources dealing with popular theatre and popular education, and connects and links the theory to concrete exercises, which comprise the majority of this book. But until you hold the manual in your hand and browse through it, you cannot see and feel the creative ideas that surge within. Among the highlights are the explanations of Popular Education and Popular Theatre, the choice of popular theater and popular education activities, and the delightful drawings that illustrate the clearly laid-out text from cover to cover.
The manual, written in 1994, has been reprinted by the Catalyst Centre so it continues to be available. This is one of several classic popular education manuals Catalyst Centre has reprinted. Two others were reviewed in the May 2003 issue of The Popular Education News.
OTHER POPULAR THEATER RESOURCES
Theatre of the Oppressed by Augusto Boal. Theatre Communications Group, 1990 Originally based at the Arena Theatre in Sao Paolo, Brazil, Boal developed a series of imaginative theatre exercises which promote awareness of one’s social situation and its limitations, individual attitudes, and even how our bodies are bound by tradition. Boal argues against both Aristotlean and a Brechtian systems of theatre, both of which construct the spectator as passive. Boal’s new Theatre of the Oppressed enables the passive spectators to become active "spect-actors" in a "rehearsal for the revolution." This is Boal’s first book and traces the theoretical and historical basis of this new theatre system.
Games for Actors and Non-Actors by Augusto Boal. Routledge, 1992. A very practical handbook in which three main categories of the Theater of the Oppressed are discussed and illustrated with the "arsenal of games": image theater, invisible theater, and forum theater. Suitable for the trained and untrained performer and educator. The dual meaning of the word "act"-- to perform and to take action -- is at the heart of this work.
The Rainbow of Desire by Augusto Boal. Routledge, 1995. The Rainbow of Desire is a handbook of exercises with a difference. It is Augusto Boal’s bold and brilliant statement about the therapeutic potential of theatre to transform lives. Now translated into English and fully and comprehensively updated from the French, The Rainbow of Desire sets out the techniques which help us “see” for the first time the oppressions we have internalized. Boal, a Brazilian theatre director, writer and politician, has been confronting oppression in various forms for over thirty years. His belief that theatre enables us to create rather than wait for the future has inspired people all over the world to use his techniques in a multitude of settings.
LINKS FOR INFO ON POPULAR THEATER
Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed http://www.unomaha.edu/~pto/
Theater Action Project http://www.theatreactionproject.org/links.php
The Bay Area Popular Theater Project http://www.rasmo.net/poptheaterframe.html
Popular Theater Performances from Art for a Fair Economy http://www.ufenet.org/activist/creative/popular_theater.html
LINKS TO POPULAR EDUCATION WEB SITES AND ONLINE BOOKSTORES (*those with online bookstores)
*Catalyst Centre (www.catalystcentre.ca/index.htm )
*Highlander Center (www.highlandercenter.org )
*IPEA (www.peopleseducation.org/ )
*Resource Center of the Americas (www.americas.org )
*Growing Communities for Peace (www.humanrightsandpeacestore.org">www.humanrightsandpeacestore.org )
Project South (www.projectsouth.org )
Center for Popular Education and Participatory Research (www-gse.berkeley.edu/research/pepr/ )
Pop Ed Links Directory (www.flora.org/mike/links/poped.html)
WE LEARN Women Expanding-Literacy Education Action Resource Network(http//www.litwomen.org/news/issue1.html)
"WHAT IS POPULAR EDUCATION?" DEFINITION OF THE MONTH
In our opinion, Popular Education is fundamentally defined according to its objective. In other words, the teaching/learning processes acquire the trait of "popular" insofar as these respond to the needs and interests of the vast majorities. We have seen these needs systemized in three dimensions, namely: dimension of base, of development, and of social change.
Excerpt from : "Popular and Adult Education" by Sigfredo Chiroque, President of Instituto de Pedagogia Popular, Lima, Peru, in Adult Education and Development