KARACHI: Karachi based theatre group, Tehrik-i-Niswan, celebrated 31 years of its inception by holding an international conference titled Tees Aur Aik Saal, at the OUP premises on Friday evening.
The conference is in collaboration with Oxford University Press and aims to explore the connection between performance arts and the politics of gender and class. Participants include people from Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, USA and Germany.
Tehrik’s founder and theater practitioner, Sheema Kermani, said, “(There are) no politics without art and no art without politics. Culture cannot be developed but it only develops over time. It is a pursuit of knowledge to develop and to understand life.”
Kamran Asdar Ali, an anthropologist based in the USA said, “She (Kermani) is an iconic figure, she fought against all odds and did plays that gave the oppressed of society an idea as to how they should stand up for their rights.”
Ameena Saiyid, Managing Director, Oxford University Press said, “I believe this international conference in itself is very timely with the recent gang rape incident that has happened in the city and the way people particularly the media has responded.”
Sheema Kermani’s Tehrik-i-Niswan has done mobile theater across the slum areas of the city and has even shown documentaries in remote rural areas to spread awareness.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 26th, 2010.