“Clothes make the man? Reverse the stereotypes and..
“Clothes make the man? Reverse the stereotypes and fight against discrimination with theater costume design techniques as a tool for the youth work“
Start date: Jan 1, 2015,
End date: Dec 31, 2015
The training course (TC) “Do clothes make the man? Reverse the stereotypes and fight against discrimination with theater costume design techniques as a tool for the youth work“ organized by Mostar Friedensprojekt e.V. (MFP) was dedicated to youth leaders and social workers as well as project leaders who intend to improve the quality of their activities by learning new creative educational methods, which combine theater and drawing techniques. 36 participants from 21 countries took part in this project. MFP strongly emphasized on diversity of the partner organizations and had chosen organizations, which are actively organizing projects for youngsters and young adults in the field of anti-discrimination and would like to learn more about the usage of the artistic techniques as a method as well as organizations, which are actively dealing with theater techniques and concentrate on them in their daily work routine. By combining these different skills and knowledge a harmonic composition was created. The TC was held from the 27th of March till the 5th of April 2015 in Potsdam. It was hosted in „Hoch3“ seminar-house.
The main topic of the training course were the usage of innovative artistic methods in the youth work with a special focus on the stereotypes based on physical appearance as well as discrimination and distinction between the individuals and the groups of people caused by them. During the last very successful training course: "The Life Before Us: Playwriting techniques for multipliers of anti-discrimination youth work“, which was implemented in the summer of 2014 in Potsdam, the team of MFP understood, how important is to thematize the stereotypes about physical appearance and how useful is the theater methods for dealing with this topic. We came to this idea, while analyzing the process of discrimination and where does it starts. The physical appearance was very important in the society through the ages. However the appearance matters not only in first impressions, but it also affects basic visual processing of other people and can easily become taping into pretty stark stereotypes of physical appearance. It leads to creation of boundaries between communities or even to acts of discrimination. The activities of this training course focused on leading participants through a series of exercises considering the background of stereotyping of physical appearance and its forms, including institutional.
During the TC „Do clothes make the man? Reverse the stereotypes and fight against discrimination with theater costume design techniques as a tool for the youth work“ together with experienced trainers participants have:
- discussed the impact of prejudices on individuals and on society, analyzed how stereotyping can escalate into acts of violence and the most important, they have recognized the role of each person in interrupting the process of „labeling“ and stoping the further development of discrimination;
- learned to use theater costume design techniques as a tool to discuss and to analyze stereotyping and prejudicing phenomenon with youngsters in entertaining and motivating way. The creation of a theater costume as a method are easily applicable in youth work independent of the age of participants. It gives quick and remarkable results when learning the basic drawing techniques. It is easily applicable with groups of different individual, cultural, religious or socio-economic backgrounds;
- were introduced into the process of the designing a theater character: creating characters story, the appearance of this specific figure as well as drawing a sketches of the costume and the theatrical makeup. By creating different costumes and getting to know the stories of different characters, participants have deconstructed the stereotypes and spoke about the meaning and influence of it for the society.
After each step participants were empowered to look at the process from meta-level and reflect what can be directly transferred to youth work and the new frame of Erasmus+ Programme. The final evaluation made by participants and their organizations showed, that the learning outcomes of the TC “Do clothes make the man? Reverse the stereotypes and fight against discrimination with theater costume design techniques as a tool for the youth work“ has improved the quality of youth work by using creative methods such as creating a theater costume. Participants have gained knowledge about their practical use with the long term results and outcomes in building of common European society, deepened the knowledge about the stereotyping and discrimination, were informed about Erasmus + and its opportunities and encouraged to reflect on and to develop common intercultural projects under the Erasmus + program by putting the newly acquired knowledge, skills and attitudes into practice.
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