Wednesday, May 06, 2009

One of the best police campaigns i've ever heard of

Just learned about this from Chiara (thanks) and BoingBoing. According to this website, Because We Love You, this is a Danish campaign to persuade bicyclists to wear helmets. I gotta say that a hug and a helmet is pretty persuasive! I'm posting this one for J'net (and the kids).

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Boal on Democracy Now!

Democracy Now! broadcast the news of Augusto Boal's death this week and included an excerpt from an interview done a few years ago (it starts at about the 30 second mark). In this interview Boal quotes the much-quoted poem by Antonio Machado which includes the line "we make the road by walking". Here's the transcript of the excerpt from Democracy Now!'s website:
“And I only have one dream. It’s to dream all my life. That’s my only dream. I would like to go on dreaming. And if I can dream of things, well, I dream of solidarity among men and women, black and white, solidarity among countries, and solidarity to create ethics. What we think sometimes, we don’t think that there is a difference between moral and ethics. Moral is mores. It’s customs. And it was moral in this country, my country—slavery. It was moral. It was moral to buy a human being. So I’m not moralist, because I know that in moral there are horrible things. But I am ethical. We need to create an ethos. In Greek, it means the tendency to some kind of perfection. And my kind of profession is solidarity, is dialogue, is democracy—real democracy, not one that we see? That’s my—I want to—not to accomplish, because to accomplish—not to accomplish, to go on. To go on. There is a poet, a Spanish poet, Antonio Machado, who says, ‘The path does not exist. The path you make by treading on it. By walking, you make the path.’ So we don’t know where the path leads, but we know the direction of the path that we want to take. That’s what I want, and not to accomplish, but to follow.”

You can also watch Boal in a June 3, 2005 Democracy Now! interview here.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Augusto Boal 1931-2009

Augusto Boal passsed away in Rio de Janeiro early this morning after being hospitalized on April 28 on account of a respiratory infection, according to the Brazilian website Zero Hora. Augusto has been living with leukemia for some time and had just cancelled his travel plans to attend the annual Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed Conference in Minneapolis in a few weeks.

Zero Hora writes:
Born in 1931 in the Rio suburb of Penha, Boal graduated in chemical engineering and was the founder of Theater of the Oppressed. Already weakened, he received in March of this year the title of ambassador of the theater world from the the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Arrested and exiled during the military dictatorship in 1971, Boal returned to Brazil after 15 years at the invitation of then Secretary of Education of the state of Rio de Janeiro, Darcy Ribeiro.
Augusto was one of the titans of modern theatre and his work has spawned hundreds, if not thousands of theatre companies and projects around the world using Theatre of the Oppressed to effect social change. He has made many trips to Canada and the US to do trainings for actors, educators and activists of all kinds. In 1986 he co-founded the Centre for Theatre of the Oppressed in Rio. He was one of the most influential teachers i have ever had and i credit my training and practice of Theatre of the Oppressed with having taught me more about facilitation and teaching than any other single practice/theory.

I add my condolences to the many i am sure are being communicated to his family, colleagues and friends in the CTO-Rio.
Some of the T/O world:
The photos above are by Kent Hägglund from The Forumtheatre Festival in Gotland, 2003.