Iraqi memory in performance : life narratives, creativity and strategies of artist during and after war. Historical memory, refugees and performance
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The Iraqi Memory Project is practice-led research: How can an artistic inquiry further the exchanges between historical events and life narratives in performance? This thesis comprises: 1) my autobiographical sketches about my experiences in and out of Iraq for the last 31 years of my life. 2) Data in interviews and questionnaires with refugees and exiled Iraqi artists.2 The data transformed into transcripts and used in the creative process of Participatory Action Research (PAR) with Australian performers for presentation of the Iraqi Nights performance.This thesis contains: In the first chapter, my autobiographical sketches combine the stories of leaving and returning home with my reflections and analyses to these journeys. Second is the poetic form of these narratives entitled: Rooms In the second chapter, I reflect on interviews with Iraqi exiled artists (aged 45-78) about their lived experiences and creative artworks. The data was gathered through semi-structured and narrative interviews. The ethnographic account is from the native Iraqi point of view and reflects on everyday life stories. It is all about our memories and how we precise our experiences, a live memory versus unfinished memories in time. In the third chapter, I wrote about the process of making the performance Iraqi Nights as a cultural production that can play a significant role in communicating historical events as exposed to multiple influences through everyday life narratives and making in performing arts. I have made an electronic version for the performance as documentation of the project online: www.vimeo.com/ommi/
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