Hate crimes related to gender happen frequently all over the world but most of the times are ignored and overlooked by society as a whole. Even though civil equality and rights amongst different genders are being balanced and have started to be guaranteed, many places still suffer from high levels of hatred, aversion, phobiaand negligence, especially underdeveloped and developing countries, where a large portion of society has lack of education and information due to social and economic inequality. Therefore, we have decided as a group to undertake this project from this point of view, trying to understand and help those who might suffer from either ignorance or violence, depending on which side of the crime theperson is.
Coming from a developing country, I have seen and dealt with situations that reflect this type of behaviour and thinking that many people might not know and even misbelieve and being able to debate and deliberate about it and also being able to position myself, yet hypothetically, in different perspectives, made me able to think broadly about issues that are often forgotten.
Afterchoosing a specific geographic position within the previously mentioned category, in this case Brazil, where the issue is prominent and current, being confirmed by online research, we started to create personas for both victims and criminals in order to understand contexts, backgrounds, thinking, points of view, motivations and any other factor that might contribute to the crime itself, whether beingfrom the criminal or the victim’s perspective. By following this path, we were able to expand possibilities and think more profoundly about the issues related to it.
Unfortunately, many people are killed just due to their sexuality and the high number of victims made us narrow it down to the most neglected portion of victims, the transgender ones, in order to get as deep as possible. Poorlyperceived in society and hardly absorbed as part of it, transgender people often end up in prostitution, which increases severally the possibility of crime by daily exposal to different environments and situations with strangers.
Foe every persona, a full deep understanding of contexts and background was crucial as we aimed to achieve a high levelled result, free of stereotypes, pre-concepts and/orprejudice. This came through research, which helped us understand reasons and causes of both behaviours and also through role playing, using the masking techniques to portray another personality and physique, hiding our owns, which helped us see things through the persona’s eyes. The practice was extremely intense and out of our comfort zone but very helpful and necessary to touch points that mightnot be remembered if not from their perspectives. Setting mood and environment was easier for me, being originally from Brazil, than for the European members of the group. We gave it a go by turning on the heating and playing sounds to emulate a potential city studied. It was obvious that the environment, therefore, is able to change people’s behaviours, especially when they end up irritating theperson.
The use of masks also made possible to record our experiences using the gender cube app and further enabled us to gauge philic and phobic responses from the position we put ourselves into. The image below shows the use of the masks.
After the role play experience, we had to assure that we were disconnected from the personas portrayed so it would not affect our behaviour out of the setenvironment, which reminded me a lot of the time I was an actor and getting out of the ‘’character’s body’’, especially when it was very strong, opinionated and controversial, was one of the first steps to unwind from the experience.
Knowing that poverty and lack of education are intrinsically related to prejudice and intolerance, although these behaviours are not exclusive of lower income...