I HAVE A QUESTION…

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I have a question for all those who look down on the arts and the entertainment industry. I have a question for all those who value their own dreams over mine. I have a question for every parent who teachers their child that the world is theirs, yet when they reach out and grab it, the world snatches that from them and holds them back from their dreams.

This past weekend I was approached by a very friendly student at my university. We got talking and of course the obvious questions came up like why on earth am I taking drama? I found out that she is a first year medical student and I being a first year drama student was not surprised at what she had said to me. She said, “So that is all you do? Acting and fooling around?”. In the wise words of Chimamanda Adichie, she warns her readers not to have the single story mindset. I have a question…

How does this relate to what I’m saying, you may ask?

Well as you can see that the single story mindset is a one sided (and usually non-positive) view on the bigger picture of life. It is living live through the stereotype and not venturing further than the stereotype. For example how Doctors or other “more academic” subjects are seen as intellectual and qualified humans (regardless of the daily sun stories) and anyone in the arts and culture side is somehow not on that same level.

Now this girl boils down dramatic arts to as simple as child’s play just with some added illegal substances to help the creative juices flow. I’m not usually an aggressively intimidating person but I was tired that day and her lack of interest of my profession took the hulk out of me. Now do I regret lashing out at her like that? Yes I do, but I do not allow others who have the single story mindset to regard my story as a game that children play.

See I played doctor-doctor as a child and I took that game seriously, to this day I still respect doctors and nurses, but one must remember that putting down other careers because you believe that helping sick people is more serious, just remind yourself that I was never acting as a child, rather playing doctor-doctor so if anything I should be allowed to call your career, your hopes and dreams, a simple profession that should be left for children to play around with.

I could easily go into details of the highlights of both sides of the story but I do want to leave you with this… who gets the say in what is a real career or what is not? Who gets the part of holding back the world to our future tomorrow?

Is it you?

Society?

Me?

Is it because you don’t understand the disposition you are in? Is the discourse within a discourse confusing the unconditioned stimuli to rearrange the food chain of a dog eat dog world? Do big words frighten your cognitive thinking? Do I ask too many questions and give too few answers?

Tell me reader, what is it that you narrow minded, spoon fed westernized couch potatoes think of who is making your program that you are watching right now?

But then again who am I? I am just another actor…

About the Author

Hannah Van Tonder
Lives in centurion, city if Tswane (Pretoria) Gauteng. Student studying dramatic arts and psychology. Fashion and food obsessed. Public speaker. Free lancer.

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