Course Spotlight: GLOS 3900/5900 ‘ Stories, Bodies, Movements’
Working together for a more equitable and just world often requires unlearning and relearning the stories of struggle that make global politics. In ‘Stories, Bodies, Movements,’ participants will undertake the collective labor of this learning through retelling and performing our own stories in relation to those we read about from locations that often seem remote to us. Together we will ask: How do we bring our stories into intense conversations with the histories and geographies that we have inherited -- stories that are simultaneously global and intimate, stories that are marked by both love and violence, stories where the protagonists may also be antagonists, and the victims may also be victimizers? The course will delve into these questions through an embodied collective journey where all the participants become co-learners as they read, write, remember, sculpt, script, and perform together in an unfolding journey. The class was first taught in Spring 2017, and culminated in the powerful staging of a play entitled, ‘Telling Dis/appearing Tales,’ under the direction of Tarun Kumar. In Fall 2017, this course will be led again by Richa Nagar, with Tarun Kumar and Anuradha Marwah joining in as artists-in-residence.
My undergraduate classmates embodied a powerful catalyst for revisiting my own understandings of the politics of storytelling and translation. Their curiosity, humility and enthusiasm constantly challenged my preconceived notions of what is and what can be, paving paths for nuanced explorations of otherwise modes of knowing justice, truth, and the ethics of knowledge production.
Sara Musaifer (Ph.D. student enrolled in the class)
This is a powerful tool for making people check their assumptions and thoughts. Dramatising and scripting using such connoisseur-like touch makes a play a powerful medium that can make people think….There are a lot of issues in society that cannot be ignored but people are unable to come to grips with it. A media like this that artfully puts forth an idea in a strong and well-curated manner without bias will create changes in society which even a leader will find difficult to inspire….The play gave me an opportunity to see how beautifully thought could be structured even if they are myriad in nature and from different sources and thereby be more palatable and changemaking when presented to the the otherwise reluctant mind that refuses to budge from its stance."
Radha Eswar, family of one of the team members who wrote from India after seeing the recording of the play
I loved to be part of a creative learning process where all of us forgot who was an undergraduate and who was a graduate student in the class. We learned to create powerfully together by becoming vulnerable before one another. We learn to trust each other with our stories so we could make something that belonged to all of us.
Jada Brown, CLA undegrad.
A mesmerizing play. I wish many more of our Global Studies majors could see it and be a part of it.
Evelyn Davidhesier, Director of Global Studies