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Drama for Development

Drama for Development
Cultural Translation and Social Change

First Edition
Edited by:

July 2011 | 352 pages | SAGE India
How do drama serials communicate development goals and achieve dramatic impact? What is involved in translating storylines, such as those from the BBC’s longest running radio soap opera, The Archers, for diverse local cultural contexts? Can drama serials bring about positive social change? This book offers unprecedented insights into the production and consumption of a range of popular radio and television drama serials, broadcast in places as diverse as Afghanistan, Burma, Cambodia, Nepal, Pakistan, India, Nigeria and Rwanda. It brings into dialogue the perspectives of the creative teams who make ‘dramas for development’, the donors who pay for them, and the audiences who consume them. It also highlights the crucial role of audience research as a tool for making drama and as a resource for translating cultures.

This book emerges from a unique research collaboration over a three year period between The Open University, the University of Adelaide, and the BBC World Service Trust. This path-breaking initiative opens windows on the intertwined worlds of media and development for academics and audiences alike.

Cultural translation means different things for dramatists, development practitioners, donors, audiences, and scholars. Their interests may collude or collide. What accommodations and adjustments are entailed in transnational circuits of serial drama production? What imaginative investments are required on the part of dramatists unfamiliar with local cultures? What cultural assumptions need to be exploded to reach audiences? This book offers an innovative framework for analysing drama for development that will appeal to practitioners and academics alike.

Introduction : Drama for Development-Cultural Translation and Social Change

Andrew Skuse, Marie Gillespie and Gerry Power
Re-framing Drama for Development

Andrew Skuse
Great Expectations and Creative Evolution: The History of Drama for Development at the BBC World Service Trust

Caroline Sugg and Gerry Power
Audience Research in Drama for Development: A Contact Zone of Translation and Transnational Knowledge Production

Gerry Power
'Creative Tensions': Audience Research and the Representational Challenge of Dramatising Opium Substitution in Afghanistan

Andrew Skuse
Considering Men, Masculinity and Drama

Charlotte Lapsansky and Joyee S Chatterjee
Telling Other People's Stories: Cultural Translation in Drama for Development

Emily LeRoux-Rutledge, Gerry Power and Carol Morgan
Broadcasting 'the State': Tribe, Citizenship and the Politics of Radio Drama Production in Afghanistan

Andrew Skuse and Marie Gillespie
Dramatising 'New Nepal'

Andrew Skuse and Michael Wilmore
A Dynamic Encoding Process: Making the Cambodian 'Taste of Life' Drama

Lizz Frost Yocum
Jasoos Vijay: Self-efficacy, Collective Action and Social Norms in the Context of an HIV and AIDS Television Drama

Lauren B Frank et al
'Passport to Love': Dramatising Forced Marriage between Pakistan and the Pakistani Diaspora

Sadaf Rizvi
Urunana Audiences at Home and Away: Together 'Hand in Hand'?

Helen M Hintjens and Fortunee Bayisenge
Gossiping for Change: Dramatising 'Blood Debt' in Afghanistan

Andrew Skuse and Marie Gillespie

Students, lecturers and practitioners alike should find this and other contrasts in the volume to be useful triggers to debate and comparison as the field continues to change and rising nations…. Drama for Development is a powerful reminder that we should not overlook radio or television in our fascination with the newer technologies, for both ‘old’ media remains as central to the lives and aspirations of billions of people across the global South – and indeed the North – as they were in pre-Facebook times.

Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute

A collection of 13 essays, the book analyses serials produced in India between 1999 and 2010 to track how entertainment can be used for education.


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ISBN: 9789353881153
ISBN: 9788132105916