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So I am on my way to Bangladesh. I am only in New York, and already I have been on the road 8 hours! We will be boarding for Dubai in a couple of hours. The trip is long, but I find ways to work with it. Walking is an important step (pun intended) and I read. Today I am reading about bullying, working with bullying, and using theatre- specifically Playback Theatre to help people understand inside and out how bullying affects us and how incredibly prevalent it is.

I’m reading about bullying, because that will be the primary focus of our work in Chittagong and Mirsarai, where, last summer 45 students were killed in an unfortunate and horrendous truck accident. What has come to the surface since then, is the volcano of anger that was under the surface-probably long before the accident occurred. One of the reasons I so love Playback, is that its focus allows us to explore an issue from many angles- Specifically the angles of the teller who might come from my culture, and might come from another culture. In working with the ritual, holding the frame, I from the US and others from Bangladesh can explore this important and disturbing theme in a safe and contained way.

I know that bullying something that happens everywhere, and in the next few weeks, I will explore the differences and similarities of our different cultures on this topic. My guess is that it isn’t too much dissimilar. From school kids in the yard, to our political leaders (if we can call them leaders at times) bullies are rampant around the world.

I am doing other things there too- Many of my colleagues have become close and we are friends. I have been invited to the home of one, and I look forward to meeting children who have grown, and been born since I was last there in 2009.  And dialogues and connections will be made.

Then after that, I’m on to India. I will write more on that when the time draws near.

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