Raising awareness among decision-makers and the general public about social and health vulnerabilities of migrant women in Laos through the diffusion of the artistic performance "Live With it" built on scientific data.
This is the main objective behind a new IRD project in Laos funded by the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives and led by IRD anthropologist Pascale Hancart Petitet, in collaboration with Thiane Khamvongsa, artist and director of the Theatre Company Les Bêtes sur La Lune, and the dance troupe FangLao.
To accurately depict the life paths of migrant women, the troupe relied on ethnographic interviews conducted by representatives of associations of people living with HIV/AIDS in Lao PDR. These were specifically trained in research practice as part of a sub-study of the project "Migration, Mobilities and HIV/STI Vulnerabilities: An Interdisciplinary and Community Based Participatory Research In Lao PDR". Conducted in partnership with: IRD, University of Health Sciences of Lao PDR, French Red Cross / Expertise France.
To know more about this project: https://www.hivresearchlaos.com/?lang=en
These interviews relate the living conditions in rural Laos and the poverty that is at the origin of migratory journeys towards forms of work that are often illegal in Thailand. They also reveal details about social and domestic violence, prostitution and related risks (transmission of HIV and other infections), use of illicit products, but also the love stories that come and go. Each dancer has created the "dance" of his or her character, "putting into body" what the person has "put into words," so that the bodies' vulnerability can be expressed through movement, dance, voice, and music.
A live show of this performance took place in Vientiane on October 25, 2019, during the Arts and Ethical Sciences days. It was also made into a film by the director Peter Livermoore, now available online.
This new project will support the organization of the "Live With It" tour in Laos with live representations scheduled in Vientiane, Luang Prabang, Pakse and Savannaket.