Outsiders who try to represent marginalized indigenous cultures through art have been criticized of various forms of misrepresentation including orientalism, exoticism and romanticism. One approach to address these problems has been to work on participatory art projects with indigenous communities. Representatives of indigenous communities, it is hoped, can provide a more complicated and realistic insider's portrayal of their community.
Participatory video involves a group or community creating its own film. The film-making process can enable participants to take action to solve their own problems, or to communicate their needs and ideas to decision-makers. Participatory video can also be an effective tool to engage and mobilise marginalised people.
It was twelve years ago that Bojan passed out in his English class. It was then that his brain tumour was discovered. Forced to go to Ljubljana to get the treatment he needed, Still Here tells the story of Bojan’s surgery and recovery. It also tells the story of Dr Šarkić. Once one of the most-respected doctors at Doboj’s hospital, he was expelled during the war because of his faith and ethnic origins. Back in the town today, he still does not practice in the hospital.
It’s an exciting time to be doing participatory communication work in development with an explosion of new methods, technologies, theories, and approaches taking place around the world. Nearly 90% of the world’s population is now covered by mobile phone signal. China has 513 million Internet users (CNNIC 2011/12). In South Africa 90% of the population have mobile phone subscriptions. Increasingly sophisticated visual methods, networking tools, and data collection tools give us access to different forms of knowledge.