What roles for artists in the coming disaster?
The number of “natural” disasters are increasing globally. Yet, disaster research is often trapped in a reductive paradigm couched in paternalistic and technocratic language of “solutions”, which are complicit with exclusionary approaches that re-entrench the very processes that exacerbate pre-disaster vulnerability. In addition, much of this research as well as mainstream media continue rely on colonial narratives that infantilize, dehumanize, and strip disaster-affected people of their identities.
The panel asks how can different creative practises and mediums offer epistemological alternatives to the dominant rhetorics through which disasters are framed, providing new vocabularies and imaginations for talking about the relationship between catastrophic events, histories, and processes of recovery. How might the arts help us to access alternative perspectives and human-centred understandings of disasters, which might provide spaces for disaster-affected people to exercise their political agency and voice to construct counter narratives to dominant discourses? The speakers will draw on their experience working with video games, graphic illustration, theatre, drawings and animation.