Performing arts and popular media can be powerful tools to end gender-based violence: Breakthrough India’s Pan-Asia Summit

NEW DELHI, March 3, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The second day of Breakthrough india The pan-Asian summit “Reframe” highlighted the critical role of performing arts and popular media in educating and raising awareness about gender-based violence and discrimination. Breakthrough India is a delhiNon-profit organization that, through the use of pop culture and media, seeks to make violence against women and girls unacceptable.

The summit highlighted how key stakeholders, nonprofits and governments can use performing arts and popular media to create a world free of violence and influence how gender norms are challenged.

start the conversation, Nidhi GoyalFounder and Executive Director of Rising Flame, a feminist disability rights organization based in India highlight the pervasive stigma around disability and gender through a comedic setting. As a universal language of communication, art has served as an important tool for raising awareness and education about gender-based violence, as well as a medium for survivors to share their stories. This can help break the culture of silence and provide a space for women to speak freely about their experiences and speak out against gender-based violence.

Anuradha Kapoorfounder and director of Swayam, a feminist organization Kolkata, said, “The arts are a very powerful means of effecting social change. As the language of the arts is universal, easy to understand, it speaks to people from diverse backgrounds and helps us deepen our understanding of complex social issues in simple yet powerful ways. We can use the arts to educate, raise awareness, spark conversations to challenge stereotypes and oppressions like gender inequality, homophobia, racism, sexism, and also to imagine new solutions and shape the way we to think about society.

“The arts help promote creativity, change opinions, transform communities and promote action for positive change. The women’s movement has used the arts extensively as a medium for change. In public spaces such as demonstrations , rallies, schools, colleges, performing arts like drama, songs, arts, fine arts, movies, have all been used to highlight issues,” Anuradha added.

The arts are known to have an intrinsic ability to connect with people’s emotions and bring visibility to the lived experiences of marginalized communities, through which they have played a key role in virtually every social justice movement across the world. story.

Talk about using music to raise awareness about gender issues, Farzana Wahid Shayana Dhaka, Bangladesh based musician, singer, lyricist, poet, music composer and human rights activist recounted having raised awareness with his audience with his music. She said: “Instead of using my art to change the world, my art changed me. From not liking attaching labels like ‘feminist songs’ to my work, I learned to embrace it and now I use it to educate people. Sometimes my music makes my audience, which is made up of families, uncomfortable because it touches on gender issues that are prevalent in every home. Yet, I continue to reiterate that respect women must come from the heart of all walks of society, and after receiving feedback and stories about my music, I share it more with my audience, allowing us to learn from each other. is a continuous journey.

Studies have shown that involving communities in the artistic process instills empathy and values, transforms them and enables them to communicate the change they wish to see in the world.

Kamala Vasukifeminist activist and artist from the North and East Sri Lanka talks about how she uses the creative arts (in painting, writing and acting) to promote issues of gender, human rights and social justice, Kamala said, “I believe in use of colors and lines that could penetrate people’s minds to make a change and transform people, and also provide space for them to reflect on themselves and start a dialogue on gender issues. exhibit my art in galleries, I try to involve the community in the process of creating the works.

There is growing evidence that the current pandemic has increased the risk of abuse and exploitation of women and girls as they are forced into isolation with their abusers. While the data is still emerging, based on the available evidence, UN Women has already warned of a “shadow pandemic” (of violence) that needs to be recognized and addressed. With increases in internet usage of between 50% and 70%, digital media has played a role similar to that of art and has helped reach large numbers of people around the world, especially young people, to advance the agenda of preventing and ending gender. – violence and discrimination based on discrimination.

Leeza Mangaldasone of india leading digital content creators, explained how she started creating sex ed content on YouTube and Instagram in 2017, aiming to normalize conversations about sex, sexuality, sexual health, gender, pleasure and the body, with a special focus on girls and fun. “My work is largely digital, and the digital realm offers a huge opportunity to have an impact due to the large number of people using the internet. Studies indicate that young people are turning to the internet for questions about sex and sexuality due to the lack of sex education in schools and colleges A potentially violent and misogynistic video might be the first thing a young person might find on the internet, which makes it all the more urgent. provide sex education on the Internet to discourage violence and promote pleasure.”

Breakthrough India recognized the importance of engaging allies from diverse backgrounds to create an environment with strong response mechanisms that amplify, support and help push back gender-based violence and discrimination from an intersectional lens.

SOURCE Breakthrough in India