In an article for the special 50th edition of PLA Notes, the author provides a case study of the work in participation, communication and change in Nigeria, in the context of Theatre For Development (TFD). The author looks at the use of the performance arts to facilitate collaborative development through the use of accessible communication strategies. The article explores the difficulty of communication, acknowledging the likely differences in perceptions, understandings and power relations of the participants involved, particularly when the aim is to promote change. The overall role of popular and collaborative communications in development is presented as about developing understanding and meanings of the phenomena that underpin our everyday lives. The article concludes by suggesting that the manner and structure of popular communication for change must therefore respond to the context in which the work is taking place; for it is determined by the nature of the society, community and target groups in which one is working.
International Institute for Environment and Development