Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Let's Talk Theater for Social Action

Hello everyone!
My goodness things have been hectic! The most important thing that's happened recently is that yesterday Theater for Social Action had our performance of the semester. It was called "Let's Talk About Sex(ism), Baby!" and looked at sexist and gender issues that are rarely talked about. Every scene was taken from the lives of TSA members directly, or people they know. One skit focused on male eating disorders/body image and sports, another on the stigma attached with getting tested for STDs, and another on the fine line between chivalry and sexism. There was discussion for about an hour and a half, and I know I've continued to talk about it outside of the performance setting.

I love Theater for Social Action because it's such a great way to be proactive and bring up topics that fly under the radar that need to be discussed. Most often these things aren't addressed because of the tension involved in talking about such topics, like racism, sexism, and sexuality discrimination (sexualitism?). That's one of TSA's goal, to make it safe to discuss things, as well as make people feel like they have the skills and knowledge to address these issues out on the campus and in the real world. Starting that dialog between people is very important, no matter what stance they may have, and often most of the battle is getting up the courage to speak out and express one's opinion when oppression is present in a situation. In our society,the fear of being labeled or thought of as argumentative, as well as the avoidance of what is viewed as conflict, all play a big roll in the side-stepping of productive discussion.

What are we afraid of? Is a few moments of uncomfortable conflict a reason to avoid these important topics and facts of life? How will one know how one feels or know enough to make that decision without talking about it and gathering knowledge? Can't these discussions come from a place of inquiring, non-oppressive, love?

I believe they can and they must.

In short, I'm proud of what TSA has done, but there's still much more to be done. Come fast, next semester!