Brazil’s Emancipation Network meets Health Humanities and Arts: Creative Curricula for At-Risk Communities to Address Inequalities

Marisa De Andrade, Leah Soweid

Research output: Book/ReportOther report

Abstract / Description of output

Covid-19 has plunged Brazil into a deeper health crisis and exacerbated pervasive inequalities, with the WHO confirming 17,296,118 cases of COVID-19 in the country as of June 20211. The discrediting and attacking of scientists and health experts alongside rhetoric that living conditions are exclusively the result of choices and actions of individuals rather than systemic failures have reinforced individualism and a lack of community solidarity. The Emancipation Network, a 14-year old, established social movement working with several Brazilian higher-education institutions and 1,200 volunteer lecturers, and InformaSUS (the university partners on this bid) designed the Collective Health in the Peripheries course. This course, offered free of charge, was open to any interested party, from high school students to health professionals. The University of Edinburgh became an official course partner and applied Health Humanities and Arts (HHA) to address Brazil’s pervasive inequalities.

Using co-created, immersive, virtual workshops which utilized HHA methodologies in the form of audiovisual and written prompts, we unpacked marginalised participants’ experiences of inequality to identify urgent needs, future aspirations and imaginative solutions for specific vulnerable groups. Planning/mobilisation commenced in February and the project ended mid-June 2021. Success indicators were captured through active participant engagement and an evaluation framework led by Brazilian partners. This project provided innovative learning and critical thinking training for at-risk communities in Brazil to challenge the status quo and tackle pervasive inequalities through creative media. A citizen-led manifesto for change—informed by project findings—was created to explore the strategic next steps for bottom-up interventions for the shaping of policies, practices and subsequent research grants. We used an interactive multimedia platform, Conceptboard, to link and synthesize said creative manifesto to project activities and outcomes.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021


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