Component Evaluation: Creating a Radio Play
Timing: 30 Minutes
These radio plays help us to understand the socio-political-historical context in which madness is defined and managed. The act of writing a script for a current radio play prescribing “appropriate” behaviour allows students to explore how socio-political influences impact what we see as pathological in society around us.
This exercise builds on the radio plays by introducing the important concept of discrimination and thus complicating the notion of stigma. Topics to take into account when writing scripts might include: poverty, sexuality, gender roles and expectations, race and indigenous experiences. Consideration of these subjects requires the students to have a working understanding of how race, class, sexuality, gender and other aspects of people’s lived realities impact their experiences of being labelled and/or treated within the mental health system.
Working individually or in groups of 3 or 4, students write and record/perform their own 2 to 3-minute radio play set in present time. Student plays should incorporate the language of today which imparts expectations of normalcy, i.e. words that are judgmental, value-laden, or even discriminatory.
With some modification, this exercise can also be used as a graded assessment.