UNCW Storytelling and Culture Announces the Premiere of “Just Us: Our Stories of Social Justice”

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

A group of UNCW students has created a new production, based on the time-honored art of storytelling, to focus on social justice.

The students, enrolled in a communications studies course taught by associate professor Julie-Ann Scott, will premiere “Just Us: Our Stories of Social Justice,” at 7 p.m., April 5, in Leutze Hall, Room 125, on the UNCW campus. A subsequent performance is scheduled for 7 p.m., April 19, at Old Books on Front Street, 249 N. Front St., Wilmington. Both shows are free and open to the public.

“Just Us” is the product of a course focused on understanding issues of diversity expressed through the art of storytelling, Scott explained. The autobiographical, interactive and theatrical production enables students to voice their personal experiences with social injustice. The goal of “Just Us” is to create a project that allows performers and audience members to come together for a production that uses personal stories to bring light to important social issues impacting the community.

“So often we just see social issues as statistics representing the struggles of people we will never meet,” added Scott, director of the Just Us Performance Troupe. “‘Just Us’ gives faces to injustice through the captivating art of personal storytelling.”

Students enrolled in this course named the production, staged the show, created the promotional materials and conducted research to prepare for an open discussion on social injustice with the audience after each performance, she said. This project allows students to apply course content while providing the community with a forum to discuss timely social issues such as bullying, racism, sexism, mental illness, violence and economic inequality. Their project is sponsored by ETEAL (Experiencing Transformative Education through Applied Learning).

“We are so excited to have students create a production from the ground up, focused on confronting issues of injustice and providing hope for a stronger, more equitable future,” stated Scott.

- Hallie Criste