Using the Arts

Communicating effectively to non-readers
Author: Rick Brown
Published by: International Journal of Frontier Missions (21.4 Winter 2004)

In seeking to free ourselves from the biases of a print-oriented culture, we need to consider, not only the kinds of media and discourse genre (e.g. narrative) that are most appropriate for oral cultures, but also the most effective ways to use those genres and media. What do non-readers like to see and hear? What do they enjoy listening to? Their choices will not necessarily be the same as those of print communicators. If the styles of presentation are ones which oral communicators prefer, then they will be more likely to listen, to understand, and to remember what they hear.

In this paper, Rick Brown argues that oral cultures have their own preferences for ways to communicate truth, and that these are often different from what print-oriented people prefer. In order to share the message most effectively, we need to find out what media and methods work best for them. In most cases this will include a multi-media approach with an emphasis on memorizing the Scriptures with the aid of high-quality recordings from skilled actors or voicers.  [more...]

Lynchburg, Virginia, USA
Sponsor: Dept. of Worship & Music Studies, Liberty University

Liberty University Online’s Master of Arts in Ethnomusicology challenges the notion that music is a universal language. It teaches that music systems vary from culture to culture just like languages. Gaining a basic understanding of a culture’s music can be vital to gaining access to its people.

The M.A. in Ethnomusicology through Liberty Online offers an innovative education in world music for students seeking careers in cross-cultural environments. Each course provides students with knowledge of the basic principles of ethnomusicology and the role of an ethnomusicologist.  [more...]

Dallas International University, Texas, USA
Sponsor: Center for Excellence in World Arts

The MA with a major in World Arts prepares students to work cross-culturally alongside singers, musicians, actors, dancers, storytellers, and visual artists, researching the arts of their community. Using these insights, the student will be able to spark artistic creations with artists to respond to their community’s needs in community development, health education, justice issues, language and arts preservation, literacy, Scripture engagement and translation, worship expressions, and other areas.

This program will be of interest to people with artistic skills and sensibilities, curiosity about culture, a commitment to serious research, and a drive to see others create. Depending on prior background and training, as well as the specialization and application courses chosen, graduates will be prepared for careers such as the following:

  • Arts journalist
  • Community development worker
  • Ethnodramatologist
  • Ethnomusicologist
  • Orality consultant
  • Trauma healing consultant
  • Arts consultant for Bible translation projects, Schools in cross-cultural contexts, Non-governmental organizations, Multi-ethnic churches, Literacy projects, and sending agencies
  [more...]
Author: Betty Green

"We make posters, bookmarks - laminated and non-laminated, bookmark kits for groups to make their own bookmarks, refrigerator magnets, note pads, stickers..."

The Inakeanon People of the Philippines are seeing God’s Word in colorful attractive posters, bookmarks, key chains, greeting cards and more. The Inakeanon Scripture Promotion team has produced over 1,250 Scripture posters as well as hundreds of the other Scripture items. These were hand made, scrapbook style from used greeting cards, stickers and punched-out shapes sent from interested prayer partners.

This article contains samples of the posters that have been produced as well as links to images of many more.  [more...]

A Tale of Two Sons
Published by: GemStone Media (2017)

"Fatmir, a pampered vineyard owner’s son, hopes to make a name for himself. Sponsoring a smooth-talking artist, he’s swindled and loses everything. Haunted by his brother’s words of failure, Fatmir is determined to prove him wrong. Yet things go from bad to worse. Destitute and hungry, rejected and without hope, will Fatmir find the courage and strength to return home?"

The Kingdom, based on a well-known story in the Scriptures, is an 82-minute film set in the vineyards of Kosovo and beaches of Montenegro. It has won 23 film festival awards and has been dubbed or subtitled in ten languages.

The film is free to download at thekingdomfilm.com.

There is a discussion guide to encourage conversations, asking questions on the themes of 'Finding Identity', 'What is life about?', 'Money, money, fun, fun' and 'The father's faithful heart'.  [more...]

Author: Beth Clark (2020)

In this paper, written during a Scripture Engagement course at Dallas International University, Beth Clark examines the micropublishing of Bible translations: looking at both the theoretical basis and practical applications.

 

From the conclusion:

"Planning to micropublish throughout a Bible translation project can have many positive benefits toward Scripture Engagement in the language community. It allows for the possibility of matching the translation style of specific passages of Scripture to their end use and format. It allows for the production of Scripture products in many different forms (stories, songs, literacy materials, etc.), to meet different needs in the community. It allows teams the opportunity to produce Scripture materials selected to meet current felt needs. In these ways, micropublishing can accelerate impact as Scripture portions are available sooner in the process. This may be particularly useful in difficult access contexts.

Micropublishing allows resources for reaching the last monolinguals of a community experiencing language shift. It also may provide resources for multilinguals with multiple heart languages, particularly in communities with common use of translanguaging. Finally, if thoughtfully planned, micropublishing provides the opportunity to engage the community and ministry partners from the beginning, and throughout, a translation project. This gives these vital partners a key role in the decision-making process and the ability to provide feedback to the translation team that can effectively guide further translation work and future decisions about content and format.

All in all, micropublishing can be a valuable tool in making sure that Bible translation resources are used wisely, and that produced Scripture is used to its fullest potential in the receptor communities."

  [more...]
Author: Mary E Saurman

"Learning takes place when the activity is (1) receptor-oriented, (2) context-oriented, (3) repetitive, and (4) participatory… Indigenous music embraces all four of these learning components. Not only are the words in the people’s spoken language, but the music is also in their traditional music system."

Research shows that music is an effective tool for memorisation. Mary Saurman describes what is needed for effective instruction and shows how music meets many of these requirements: it is receptor-orientated, uses repetition, is participatory, and has intrinsic motivation because it is a part of people’s culture. She offers examples of how music has enhanced literacy programs across the world. Finally she outlines several steps to incorporating music into a literacy program: consider music’s function in the community; ask questions of when it’s used; what it’s used for and who uses it; then consider which song categories and styles are appropriate for literacy; and finally begin to use it!  [more...]