Saturday, 11 January 2014

Workshop on Leadership, Citizenship & Social Responsibility based on The Robben Island Bible play

The workshop on Leadership, Citizenship & Social Responsibility based on The Robben Island Bible will use the chosen Shakespearian texts and the interviews with the former political prisoners to explore the themes of Leadership, Citizenship & Social Responsibility.  This would be done through drama workshops that would examine the chosen Shakespearean texts as well as the men's own words to see what lessons can be learned.  From these interviews, there is a lot that can be learned from their journeys as well as their observations of South Africa and the wider world today.

As inspirational as many of the chosen quotes were about leadership, according to Venkatrathnam, many of the men who chose quotes in his ‘bible’ whilst in prison and who are now currently in politics or business within South Africa have not lived up to such inspiration and have caused great harm to this young democratic country.  The Robben Island Bible workshops on Leadership, Citizenship & Social Responsibility have been set up as a direct response to such difficulties found in South Africa as well as the rest of the world by examining ethical leadership whilst young people are still in education.

Shakespeare's texts have a track record in exploring how a good leader is formed and leads [generally through the exploration of Henry IV as an example of a 'good' leader; Macbeth & Richard III as examples of 'bad' leaders] and focused on improving management skills.  I want to build on this using the interviews with the men who were imprisoned on Robben Island and focus the training on students who might be going into positions of leadership of one form or another in the future.  

The aim or the workshop is to benefit the students through being inspired to be better leaders through the words of Shakespeare & the former political prisoners and to create a pathway to future leadership.  We would explore use of voice, space & body to highlight how a leader might lead and be a source of inspiration to others.

If possible and of benefit,  Hahn would be interested in working with local teachers to help shape & develop it in ways in which they think is best for their students.  He would be keen to work with them to finely develop the workshops.  The project is quite flexible in terms of deliverability.  At minimum, a reduced version could be delivered in 5 days: one day to work with the teachers and four days to deliver to the students.  This can then be easily scaled up depending on the arrangements to include term long modules.  

The workshops would be based around the chosen Shakespearean texts [‘Once more into the breach, dear friends, once more...’ / ‘Cowards die many times before their deaths; The valiant never taste of death but once...’ amongst many others] and the interviews to get young people to discuss and participate in leadership, citizenship and social responsibility.  

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