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and the empowerment of communities for social change
Matewa - firstname.lastname@example.org
February 27, 2003
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broad research question for this study was to investigate how communication
media empowers rural communities for social change. To achieve the
goals of the study, both qualitative and quantitative approaches
were used to investigate how participatory video and radio were
being used to contribute to the advancement and empowerment of rural
women, who lack or have limited access to both print and electronic
In the literature review, the trend in development
communication since the 1960's is discussed. It was evident
from literature that there has been a gradual shift from the one-way
view of communication to a deeper understanding of communication
as a two-way process that is interactive and participatory.
It emerged in this study that video is a reflexive
medium, which enables actors in a participatory project to be both
the subject and the object of reflection. Participants realised
that they could do things, and say what they thought knowing that
it would be heard beyond their local boundaries, and so video helped
to build their confidence. When a video produced using the participatory
approach was shown to other communities, it enabled members of these
communities to see themselves through the lives and experiences
of others and reflect. The conclusion of this study is that video
and radio, when used in a participatory way, are extremely powerful
in giving recognition to marginalised individuals and communities,
which then generates the sense of empowerment that enables them
to take action for social change.
interviews with media practitioners from various government and
developmental organisations revealed that access to information
among rural communities was limited. They also acknowledged that
using the participatory approach, simpler solutions to development
problems could be found.
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