The Liberty Tree Education Pack is produced by Public Domain Arts & Media, a not-for-profit, community interest company that uses the tools of the arts & media to encourage the development of active democratic citizenship by advancing public knowledge and understanding of the history of political struggle and the praxis of contemporary political struggle.
We perceive that, through no fault of their own, many UK citizens are not so much politically ‘apathetic’, as politically ‘ignorant’. The idea of ‘political struggle’ seems to be increasingly remote from public consciousness. Many people understand that there is much injustice in the world and want to do something about it, but they have not been educated to understand that, almost always, it is collective political struggle that brings about progressive political change.
For understandable reasons, ‘political struggle’ is rarely part of the curriculum of contemporary mainstream educational institutions, but we believe an understanding of the history and praxis of political struggle, is vital for active, democratic citizens and thus for a healthy democracy.
We have discovered that when individuals are educated about the political struggles of the past and about the praxis of contemporary political struggles, their political understanding and self-actualisation as democratic citizens can be transformed.
The company pursues its objectives using a range of arts and media tools including (but not limited to) music and song, graphics, dance, theatre, film, television, video, photomontage, social media, performance art, street theatre, podcasting etc.
We believe that active citizens
- Form their own opinions and think for themselves
- Are informed about issues that matter to them
- Develop their own ideas for change and act upon them
- Effectively challenge injustice, inequality and discrimination
- Make a positive contribution to their world and to wider society
By ‘active citizenship’ we mean a range of activities that include, but are not limited to; joining political parties, joining or forming campaigning groups, joining trade unions, standing for lay office in trade unions and political parties, attending public meetings, engaging with elected representatives, producing activist works of arts & media and an on-going commitment to further study and research.
We will help develop active citizenship by:
- Providing free, online, creative, educational resources.
- Delivering free courses to all – and especially to the most educationally disadvantaged.
- Producing participatory, creative activist, projects and events that encourage public engagement with the history and praxis of political struggle.
We believe the more widespread the knowledge and understanding of the history and nature of political struggle, the healthier will be our democracy. Historically progressive political change has always involved intense collective struggle and individual self-sacrifice. Today there are many who fear that Western democracies are descending into a regressive, post-truth, political era in which hard-fought personal liberties are once more under threat. A well-educated, well-informed and politically conscious electorate is democracies best defence against the reactionary forces that threaten to engulf us.
Founders Of Public Domain
Chris Jury is a TV actor, director and writer best known for playing Eric Catchpole in over 60 episodes of the BBC’s antique classic, Lovejoy, and for directing over 50 episodes of Eastenders. He has written theatre plays, feature films and numerous episodes of TV shows such as Casualty, The Bill & Holby. He was Artistic Director of The Blockley Millennium Mystery Plays http://blockleymysteryplays.org.uk. He currently writes the political philosophy blog I Am Not A Number http://iamnotanumber.org.uk and presents, Agitpop, a pop & politics radio discussion programme http://agitpopradio.org.uk
Kerry Irvine is an independent theatre producer. She has produced 18 theatre festivals and toured shows around the UK and Europe, working with over 200 theatre companies. She has worked across sectors in commercial and community theatre, recently producing Pictures of Life a musical community pageant event with partners Camden Council and London St Pancras for Sir David Attenborough’s charity Woodland Trust. She has been an associate to successful productions such as Churchill’s ‘Fen’ (FinboroughTheatre) as well as two Fringe First winning productions, ‘Crush ‘and ‘Mad about the Boy’, both toured nationally and received national acclaim.