Creative Expression for Transformation Assignment | Homework Help Websites

Assignment 1: Creative Expression for Transformation

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Goal: Removing barriers to transformation yourself & in other people; Feel connection to interrelated web of life; Allowing yourself to become vulnerable and comfortable with expressing your subjective truth.

You select a theme that is linked to current events addressing a process of transformation and how it is playing out in a country.

Example topic: Challenge of Syrian refugees within the larger theme of forced migration and national borders

Please contact the instructor with your topic idea before Week 4

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This will be the same theme you use for your Human Development Report (Assignment 5). Be sure to start exploring that early since that is a larger project.

Based on examples provided and ideas shared in the class videos, you will develop a creative expression (poetry, spoken word, song, visual art piece, etc ….) that encourages the progress you feel is needed in your selected country. This is your opportunity to get creative!


Hold up.. What am I submitting?

· Appropriate format of your art piece (e.g. video, audio…)

· Written reflection for each phase- submitted as a document with labeled 3 sections. The questions are just for guidance, please feel free to write with your own flow. But take the time to critically reflect on the points we’ve raised.


Part 1. Reflection

Pre- Engagement Written Reflection (1-2 pages)

Many of our social systems have remained stagnant and resistant to the large-scale transformations needed to address the roots of our sustainability challenges. Reflect deeply on the following questions as they apply to your chosen topic.

Societal Level Transformations:

· What are the major systems at play in your case (think in the different categories of social, economic, ecological, etc…)?

· What is the desired form of transformation you’re hoping for in your case?

· What is causing the systems to stay stagnant and resistant to the type of change you feel is needed?

· What is the logic/mechanism of control of the systems in your case?

· How can we harness our creative powers to transcend limitations of the current state of the system?

· For example, capitalism has kept us fixed in the money economy… systems of trading services or subsistence farming become an act of resistance to the current system and provide an alternative.

· What is the role of complexity, uncertainty, and destruction in the process of creativity and transforming a new alternative system?

Individual Level Transformations:

· How do you relate to your case?

· Are there transformations that you believe can happen at the individual scale?

· How about the idea of “adding” and “removing” for sustainability that was discussed in the class videos?

· For example, The idea behind this is that we often get trapped in the idea of unlimited growth and development, the need to have more material progress. Rather, an alternative perspective shows that we have everything we already need within us, we just need to “unlearn” the constraints that society has put on us.

· What are the internal powers we have to co-create society and develop alternatives to the current state in your case? Are there belief systems that are hindering our own awareness of these powers?

· What sorts of belief systems have we been trained into maintaining that do not serve us that relate to this case? To emancipate ourselves in this particular case study, what needs to be “subtracted” from our individual lives and societal pressures?


Part 2. Experiential Art Field Trip

Find a local art gallery, museum, poetry night, theatre performance… or whatever to attend. Before attending, read through your reflection and let your responses settle in as you view the chosen art expression.

Post- Field Trip Reflection (1-2 pages)

· What did you see? Did it spark anything in you? Did you have any “aha” moments?

· Did the piece relate to transformation in any way? Relate it to the discoveries you made throughout your Pt.1 reflection

· What was the experience like for you? Did it shape what you’re going to do for the assignment?

Part 3. Creative Expression

Look to part 4, you’re going to be sharing this. Who is your audience? What do you want to spark in them? Create the piece with that in your mind and heart.

Whatever you chose, we want to see that you have put effort into producing something that you feel will inspire change. Share the appropriate format of the piece. We will not be grading you on editing skills or anything that assesses how “professionally” you produce the material. Rather, we want to see you getting creative and pushing your boundaries on what alternative ways you can communicate the material.

Be sure in your piece, you’re moving beyond just denouncing what you’re opposed to. This is too reactionary. That can be a powerful first step, but it’s also important to go further into the creative space of transformative action-oriented response. What do you wish to see instead of this current state? Showcase that vision!

Your creation has the power to create a stirring, to spark something in those that you share it with. Don’t take this lightly! You have POWER to manifest CHANGE!


Part 4. Engaging Others & Reflection

Now is the fun & scary part! Time to share with others! This should be in-person. Gather your friend, family, or even go to a public event like a poetry night or perform on the streets! Afterwards, get feedback from your audience.

Post sharing reflection (1-2 pages) These are guiding questions but take it in any direction that’s meaningful for you.

· What creative expression medium did you choose? Why? What were the intentions behind the piece? How was this medium appropriate to actualize those intentions?

· Where did you share? How did it go?! How did it feel to make yourself so vulnerable?

· How did your audience respond? Did anyone share feeling moved by your piece? If so, how did that make you feel?

· If you didn’t incite the type of reaction you were hoping for- why do you feel that happened?

· Was this your first time sharing a creation of your own? What was the creative process like for you?

· Do you feel this assignment is useful? Why or why not?

· And anything else you wish to share!


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