Awareness Community Theatre: A Local Response to HIV and AIDS in Papua New Guinea
This essay examines the Tokaut AIDS Awareness Community Theatre (ACT) model for HIV prevention and its application in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Key to the ACT approach was realising early on that the HIV epidemic was not only a medical issue, but also a social one. This essay explores the development of locally devised theatre content that highlights participation and agency as important to the approach. Five key considerations for sustained community theatre approaches emerged from the process. These include: the process of co-creating scripts, designing culturally relevant content, implementing a layered approach, engaging in a multi-sectoral approach and generating site-specific creative developments. The theoretical framing of this essay was drawn from concepts of community theatre and dramaturgy.
KeywordsPractice-led research Community theatre Papua New Guinea Indigenous knowledge
- Head teacher Mado Subra primary school. 2007.Google Scholar
- Old man from Lamtub. (2005). Performance at Sawoi village.Google Scholar
- Older woman from Sawoi. (2006). Sawoi village.Google Scholar
- Teachers at the Rem Primary School. (Grade 7 and Grade 8, 2008).Google Scholar
- Boal, A. (1979). The Theatre of the Oppressed. London: Pluto Press.Google Scholar
- Gray, C. (1998). Inquiry Through Practice: Developing Appropriate Research Strategies. In P. Korvenmaa (Ed.), No Guru, No Method? Conference Proceeding from the Research Institute. Helsinki: University of Art and Design.Google Scholar
- Haseman, B., Baldwin, A., & Linthwaite, H. (2012). Folk Opera: Stories Crossing Borders in Papua New Guinea. RiDE: The Journal of Applied Theatre and Performance, 19(1), 98–109.Google Scholar
- King, E., & Lupiwa, T. (2009). A Systematic Literature Review of HIV and AIDS Research in Papua New Guinea 2007–2008. Port Moresby: National AIDS Council Secretariat.Google Scholar
- Lepani, K. (2011). Evaluation of the Australian Aid Program’s Contribution to the National HIV Response in Papua New Guinea, 2006–2010: Annex 19: Ausaid’s Contribution to Focus Area 2 Education and Prevention. http://www.ode.dfat.gov.au/publications/documents/png-hiv/annex19-educationandprevention.pdf. Accessed 30 Mar 2014.
- Lepani, K., & Emily, R. (2011). AusAID Contribution to the Madang Province Response HIV Response: ANNEX 27: Evaluation of the Australian AID Program’s Contribution to the National HIV Response in Papua New Guinea, 2006–2010. http://www.ode.dfat.gov.au/publications/documents/png-hiv/annex29-madangprovince.pdf. Accessed 26 May 2014.
- Levy, C. (2005). Tokaut AIDS Baseline Report’ ‘Attitudes and Behaviours Towards HIV and AIDS and Persons Living with AIDS. Contemporary PNG Studies, 3, 13–30.Google Scholar
- Levy, C. (2007). HIV and AIDS Awareness Programs in Remote Areas of PNG: An Evaluation of VSO PNG Tokaut AIDS Impact in the Second Year of Activity. Contemporary PNG Studies, 6, 53–62.Google Scholar
- Low, P. (2011). They Reckon I Need a Dramaturg: Examining the Value of a Dramaturg to Both the Playwright and the Professional Theatre Company in Australia (Master’s Thesis). Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts. http://ro.ecu.edu.au/theses/507. Accessed 3 May 2017.
- McNiff, J. (2013). Action Research: Principles and Practice. London/New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Muller, R., & MacLaren, D. (2013). Systematic Literature Review of HIV/AIDS Research in PNG from 2009–2012. http://www.tropicalhealthsolutions.com/pnghiv. Accessed 26 Jan 2016.
- Rogers, C., Bleakley. R., Ola, W., & CARE Integrated Community Development Project Team. (2011). Rural Poverty in Remote Papua New Guinea: Case Study of Obura-Wonenara District. http://devpolicy.org/rural-poverty-in-remote-png20111013/. Accessed 27 Apr 2014.
- Stella, R. (2001). Papua New Guinea Literature at the Crossroads: Islands, Languages, and Cultures. ARIEL: A Review of International English Literature, 32(1), 137–152.Google Scholar
- Stella, R. (2007). Imagining the Other: The Representation of the Papua New Guinean Subject. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.Google Scholar
- Thomas, V., Papoutsaki, E., & Eggins, J. (2010). Visual Dialogues, Community Action & Social Change: A South Pacific Islands HIV/AIDS Project Application. Paper Presented at the Annual Conference of the Asian Media Information and Communication Centre, Singapore. http://unitec.researchbank.ac.nz/bitstream/handle/10652/1495/Papoutsaki%20-%20Visual%20dialogues.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y. Accessed 3 May 2017.
- UNAIDS. (2010). Combination HIV Prevention: Tailoring and Coordinating Biomedical, Behavioural and Structural Strategies to Reduce New HIV Infections. http://www.unaids.org/sites/default/files/media_asset/JC2007_Combination_Prevention_paper_en_0.pdf. Accessed 8 Jan 2017.
- UNDP. (2012). HIV/AIDS Overview in Papua New Guinea. http://www.pg.undp.org/content/papua_new_guinea/en/home/ourwork/hiv_aids/overview.html. Accessed 8 Jan 2017.
- Yamo, H. (2011). HIV/AIDS Language in Tok Pisin: Benefit or Barrier? In E. Papoutsaki, M. McManus, & P. Matbob (Eds.), Communication, Culture & Society in Papua New Guinea: Yu Tok Wanem? (pp. 103–112). Auckland: Pacific Media Centre.Google Scholar