Our cast members come from many different walks of life and all volunteered to be in this film. The making of this film was a 2-year process; cast members participated in an initial “test” interview to determine if they wanted to be filmed and to help develop the interview method. Cast members were then invited back for a second interview, which were the interviews filmed and showcased in Parrhesia.
Each person was asked if they would be interested in talking about their experiences with “anti-oppression.” Everyone said “yes” but didn’t really know what they would talk about. Truthfully, neither did we. A goal of this project was to discover what the work of anti-oppression really looks like in the lives of regular, ordinary people. Knowing that Oppression has a way of convincing us that we can’t do much at all, we suspected that our interviewees would not initially have an answer. Thus we relied on our interview process, a method based on Narrative Approaches (see Michael White and David Epston) which facilitates the generation of rich stories and discovery of knowledge, to help us create the story of anti-oppression.
In the spirit of parrhesia, it was important that those interviewed were not “experts” in the classic sense – meaning the kind of credentialed, specialized professionals typically seen in documentaries. Instead our interviewees are experts on their own lived experiences. They are set center stage to voice their truths to the audience. While none of us knew what would come of creating this film, we found ourselves building a stand against oppression together.
This is our story, and we hope it inspires you to tell your own stories against oppression.