Asia

Political conscientisation through street theatre: a study with reference to Kalyanasaugadhikam

Adakkaravayalil Yoyakky Eldhose

Theatre occupies a significant place in any revolutionary political strategy that has as its objective a radical transformation of society. This paper attempts to make a thematic and structural analysis of the Malayalam street play Kalyanasaugadhikam written by Anil Nadakavu in 2009 and performed by Manisha Theatres, Thadiyankovil, Kasaragod, Kerala, India. It is also an exploration into the politics behind the production and consumption of every cultural product in our society, with a special reference to the political implications and aesthetics offered by the street play Kalyanasaugadhikam.

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Public understanding of cyclone warning in India: Can wind be predicted?

Biswanath Dash

In spite of meteorological warning, many human lives are lost every year to cyclone mainly because vulnerable populations were not evacuated on time to a safe shelter as per recommendation. It raises several questions, most prominently what explains people’s behaviour in the face of such danger from a cyclonic storm? How do people view meteorological advisories issued for cyclone and what role they play in defining the threat? What shapes public response during such situation? This article based on an ethnographic study carried out in coastal state of Odisha, India, argues that local public recognising inherent limitations of meteorological warning, fall back on their own system of observation and forecasting. Not only are the contents of cyclone warning understood, its limitations are accommodated and explained.

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Playing with shadows – playing with words: exploring teachers’ ownership through poetic inquiry in a Norwegian–Nepalese preschool teacher education project

Ruth Mjanger

This article explores the use of poetic inquiry in a transnational competence-building Shadow Play Project. Based on journals from four Nepalese preschool teacher educators, I present and interpret examples of data poems that portray the teachers’ experiences of ownership in the project. My discussion intends to make explicit some aspects of the process of my search for the experience of ownership, coupled with a discussion of the search of a poetic form. I will further reflect upon the usefulness and challenges of poetic inquiry, given the use of English as a second or third language of the persons involved. Through this, I seek to develop a critical understanding of poetic inquiry as a way of understanding the experiences of others.

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Folk performances: reading the cultural history of the Thiyya community in Kerala

M. Zahira

This essay explores the ritual performance called Theyyam Vayanadan Kulavan and its traditions in Malabar, Kerala, India. Drawing on an analysis of the performance text and the myth that informs it, I present how the ritual mirrors the shifting desires and experiences of a marginalised community. In conclusion, I explore how the structures of the ritual are interpellated in a globalised world where images of the theyyam are used as icons to promote commercial products or as symbols of Kerala culture in the tourism industry.

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