Exploring the Potentials of Community Theatre as a Tool for Social Change: the Participatory Communication Method


Abstract
It is observed that most development modalities employed over the years for achieving community development in Africa have not leaved up to expectation in terms of involving the majority of people in the quest for national transformation and development; rather, these modalities tend to complicate the very problems they are set out to solve. The situation is mostly like this because the adopted development strategies have not taken adequate cognizance the essence of effective communication methods and the importance of people’s perspectives and peculiarities in these processes. Mostly, the so-called outsiders and experts in development matters who are physically and socially separated from the people think for them and about their development. This situation is inimical to genuine and sustainable development. It is important therefore to note that development can only be meaningful and sustainable when it is people generated; involving people’s real needs and their participation in the process of achieving them. It is at this point therefore that community theatre can come handy as it has the potentials to bring people together to discuss issues that disempowered them and participatorily proffer solutions to the negatives. Community theatre can be explored to work with rural and urban people; mostly the rural dwellers who are mostly disempowered. In view of this therefore, this paper posits that community theatre is a method of participatory communication towards achieving social change.
Keywords Community Theatre  Social Change, Participatory Communication  Culture
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