Instilling cultural values through bodily engagement with human rights

by Marti, P., Trotto, A. Hummels, C.C.M., Peeters, J.

accepted at CHItaly 2013

Screen Shot 2013-06-27 at 15.36.09The paper presents vision, approach and outcomes of “Light through Culture”, an international design school that aims at weaving, through design, innovative technologies and culture into a new canvas for making and thinking [6]. In this paper we present the second edition of the school that explored the theme of human rights and designed ways of eliciting the experience of their violation, with the realization of an experiential path through five interactive spaces, in an exhibition called “Experiencing Human Rights”. The students built this interactive path to elicit a rich experience and unfold new opportunities for meaning to be elaborated by visitors. Story telling was used, as a way of creating a holistic experience that was not just based on the narration of facts but also exploited feelings and deep cultural values through embodied interaction. Based on the student’s craftsmanship and their different cultural and educational backgrounds, , they opened up a reflection on human rights, both in their own process, as well as for the visitors during the exhibition. The students’ learning activity held Making in its core, and students were encouraged, through cycles of reflection-on-action, to develop their personal point-of-view, take responsibility for it and present the designed exhibition to the visitors, to invite them to be bodily engaged, reflect and take their own point-of-view.

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