We’ve read in the past a chapter from Freire’s Pedagogy of the Oppressed and the whole time I was reading about the Mapping Memories project, I kept coming back to the ideas that Freire proposed. For example, the facilitators of the project stressed the fact that collaboration was a key component to the participants to feel like the work they produced was indicative of who they were and their experiences. The way the chapter presented the process of the workshop, one could tell that both the facilitators and the participants benefited from each other and the project became better as the collaboration potential between the two became stronger.
I was specifically made aware of how participant media is different from advocacy media by the fact that the facilitators noticed that as participants communicated visually their emotions of how certain events made them feel regarding their status as refugees in Canada, they found more commonalities with each other, despite language barriers,etc. And here is where the facilitators are in a tricky situation of being able to balance a “meaningful process” with a “polished media project.” Whereas advocacy media (that is made by a group for another group) is more about communicating an idea to make someone want to support the cause, the benefits of participatory media is that you can get a project that can be used for advocacy, but also has the added benefit of having it come from the community itself. We were shown examples in class of videos that were made by the communities versus ones made by groups for the community, and the difference in tone is an example of what an impact it makes for the media to come from the people.
I found this quote to be really interesting: “media representation[…] captures and freezes a particular moment in people’s lives, while their stories continue to change and develop.” That sentence just makes me wonder about what is left out, unsaid and not captured through the media in that person’s life at the time. So much.