Swayong’s Storytelling Festival 2022 deconstructs social norms, taboos

Swayong, an organisation working against social injustice through storytelling, has organised the Storytelling Festival 2022 to deconstruct social norms and taboos.

The organisation has been raising awareness about gender-based disparities, violence against women, trans communities, indigenous communities and members of the LGBTQ community in Bangladesh for a long time.

Even the most intricate slants of historical events are remembered if they are taught through storytelling. And this was the aim of the closing day of Swayong’s two-day Storytelling Festival 2022, powered by Manusher Jonno Foundation and Global Affairs Canada, Saturday.

Swatil Mahmud, one of the founders of Swayong said: “To hear the stories of 121 people, we had to hear a thousand ‘nos.’ Because storytelling is a difficult job – namely, if it is a story of injustice that one has experienced.”

“The feminists of our generation could not take to the streets with a torch in hand after sundown. The feminists of this era can lead a torch procession after midnight. That itself is a change. I applaud you all,” said Shireen Huq, one of the founding members of Naripokkho.

Members of Bonhishikha also graced the stage to perform two plays “Orna” and “Loke Ki Bolbe.”

“Feminism is a political stance for me. I call myself a socialist feminist,” said actress Bonna Mirza while highlighting and sharing her take on feminism.

The event ended with the Human Library Fair which encompassed an interactive and frank conversational segment with 13 human books. Visitors were allotted 15 minutes to explore the human books present at the event through frank conversations.

Prominent figures of the human library included Muntasir Rahman, journalist of Mondro, Hochemin, trans rights activist, wheelchair cricketer Md Mohasin, Nayan Murmu and Sarah Marandy, indigenous community representatives, and many more esteemed feminist rights and gender rights activists, and supporters of the indigenous committees.

Source: United News of Bangladesh