Mabelle Fomundam

“An Evolving Theatre of Social Change”

Mabelle Fomundam

In my research, I will investigate the techniques and processes that theaters for social change currently use to develop solutions to community problems. The techniques that are identified through the research will be compared to the techniques developed by Augusto Boal. Augusto Boal was a modern advocate of the idea that theater could be used as a motor for change. He spent his life developing techniques for using theater to promote social change. In his book The Rainbow of Desire, Boal says, ” we taught the peasants how to fight for their lands… taught the blacks how to combat racial prejudice… taught women how to struggle against oppressors.” Before he died in 2009, Boal shared the work he had done and the discoveries he had made through his books and workshops. His books provide a good foundation for prospective practitioners of theater for social change. However, his life’s work was developmental. It consisted of making modification to old practices so as to produce better results. Consequently, the purpose of this investigation is to document any current adaptations, modifications, and variations being made by practitioners of theater for social change to Boal’s techniques. This research therefore aims to record the development of theater for social change. This research will be conducted both in the United States and Switzerland.

How did you find your mentor for year or artistic research project?
Dr. Kreizenbeck had previously been my professor and director.

How did you know this was the project you wanted to do?
The research question was one that I really wanted to know about.

How did you hear about the Undergraduate Research Award (URA) program? Is this your first independent research project?
In previous years, I saw other people on the myumbc spotlight. This is my first research project.

Was the application difficult to do?
The greater clarity you have regarding what your research question, the easier it becomes to complete the application.

How much did your mentor help you with the application?
He wrote me a recommendation later and advised me on what I wrote on my application.

What has been the hardest part about your research?
The hardest part has to be crafting the research report, considering that it will be the longest academic report that I have written.

How does your research relate to your work in other classes?
My research provides me with information that I believe would be nice to include in the curriculum of my other classes.

What else are you involved in on campus?
I am part of the slam poetry team and I am also a desk staffer in Erickson Hall

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