Our researchers and practitioners assault bias, discrimination, disparity, diversity, imbalance, indifference, inequity, injustice, marginalisation, poverty, prejudice, stigma, stereotyping and unfairness with chronicle, composition, community, data, dispatch, documentary, fiction, history, images, invention, joke, line, myth, narrative, news, novel, movement, paint, photo, plot, poem, portrait, recital, report, saga, scoop, score, song, story, tale, word and yarn.
We seek to drive change and reduce inequalities through the creative act of storytelling. Inequalities present wide-ranging challenges to contemporary society. Our projects take a cross-disciplinary approach to examining storytelling’s potential to impact today’s economic, socio-demographic and cultural inequalities.
Inequality (in all its guises) underpins the current functioning of our civilisation, and it’s not going away. The Inequality & Storytelling research programme seeks to support research that tackles inequality on a physical level but also to drive change, though the creation of powerful new narratives that subvert the status quo. “The truth is,’ says Greta Thunberg, ‘when you are used to privilege, equality feels like oppression.” Quote: Ernman E, Thunberg G,S and B. Our House is on fire: Scenes of a family and a planet in crisis (Allen Lane 2020)
Storytelling reaches across communities, proving structure, meaning and purpose, and serves to engage audiences, and grow understanding of issues and their ramifications. “The Human being is a story telling animal, (it) tells itself stories to understand what sort of creature it is” Salman Rushdie. The programme is inherently cross-disciplinary and able to serve entrepreneurial, sociocultural ends, with purchase in traditional and digital media.
The key questions we address are:
- How can storytelling methods be leveraged to address challenges of inequality and diversity?
- How can different art forms be used to communicate stories of inequality?
- How can storytelling e used to highlight and engage people with issues arising from inequality, or issues associated with marginalised communities?
- How can storytelling reach across communities to address issues of sociocultural disintegration?
- How can storytelling be used as a diagnostic tool and a means of problem solving?
“The most dramatic scenes, painted without talent or imagination, generate only indifference and boredom. The task for artists is therefore to find new ways of prising open our eyes to tiresomely familiar yet critical ideas…For hundreds of years there have been people whose function was precisely to see and make us see what we do not naturally perceive. These are the artists”. Quote: Philosopher Alain De Botton. Religion for Atheists (Penguin 2012).
Some of the projects within this programme include:
Fog of Sex (Stories from the frontline of student sex work)Lead: Professor Chris Morris
Fog of Sex (Stories from the frontline of student sex work) is a 60-minute drama documentary which was made as part of The Student Sex Work...
Gwalt. Glosy (Rape. Voices)Lead: Agnieszka Blonska
Gwalt. Glosy (Rape. Voices) was a 2015 theatre production that explored issues of sexual violence towards women.
Wildworks - A Great Night Out
Commissioned by Sunderland Cultural Spring, A Great Night Out narrated tales of epic journeys, football and celebrations of the community.
Polish VerminLead: Agnieszka Blonska
Polish Vermin is a piece of theatre which explores the lives of EU migrants living in the UK in the wake of the Brexit vote.
MOTHLead: Nicola SalkeldAshley Rudolph
MOTH is challenge attitudes, conventions and context surrounding death and dying.
South African PhotographyLead: Dr Simon Clarke
This book is the first comprehensive survey of South African photography from 1837 to 2020.
The story of possessed and exorcised nuns serves as a pretext for research into the long history of colonization of female body, sexual...
Black Stars: Belafonte, Poitier and a Long Overdue Celebration of Black CinemaLead: Dr Neil Fox
A feature article on the BFI Black Star season and reviews of re-releases of Martin Ritt's Paris Blues and Robert Wise's Odds Against...
Charting Theoretical Directions for Examining African Journalism in the ‘Digital Era’
The study thus draws on social constructivist approaches to technology and the sociology of journalism, as well as an array of theoretical...
Cafe Morte: Tears of Things – Museum of Broken ObjectsLead: Lucy Willow
We invited artists, writers, academics, undergraduates, museums and member of the community to contribute by writing a short narrative and...
Unruly Runnings: On track with identity and difficulty
This project examines ideas of identity and difficulty through the lens of Penny Andrews’ work. Informed by training and racing as a...
PhD & MPhil researchers
PhD and MPhil researchers aligning with the Inequality & Storytelling programme include:
|Rachael Jones||Landscape, Loss and Imagination: The Potential for an Experimental Documentary to Explore and Invigorate Cultural Connections with the Land.|
Falmouth University’s Research Repository (FURR) hosts, preserves and provides open access to our publicly available collection of University produced research materials, for the benefit of staff students, the wider field and general public.
Inequality & Storytelling in FURR
Access all current and historic research materials published in association with the Inequality & Storytelling programme and its portfolio of research and innovation projects.