Knowledge is the most powerful weapon against ignorance. Sensible intelligence shapes our personality, pursuits, and enhances our ability to make conscious as well as conscientious decisions.
In the realm of animal rights, the more we educate the public, the more the animal rights movement will cease to be a crusade and animal rights will become a part of our collective daily experience.
Humane education is slowly becoming a standard in school systems. As more schools require humane education, programming also needs to expand from its current basic curriculum.
In it’s most complete structure, humane education should be a continuous course of learning to equip all school-age children and teens with the competence to understand the far-reaching implications of the relationship between humans, animals, and the environment.
Vegan film director Stevan Zivkov Andricin is on the verge of upgrading and intensifying humane education in schools with his documentary film, Animals: A Parallel History.
Born in former Yugoslavia, now the Republic of Serbia, Stevan Zivkov Andricin moved to Hungary just before the 1991 Civil War and began his career as a cartoonist/illustrator for a variety of Budapest magazines.
After the fall of the Milosevic dictatorship, Stevan founded Cityfocus, a motion graphics design and web design studio in Vojvodina Novi Sad. Stevan, who is also the Founder of the Planeta Vegetarian Festival, is an established producer and director of historical and children's documentary film production for television.
“During work on previous documentary movies, I realized the fascinating role of animals in the history of humankind,” Stevan says. “Man and animal were participants in the history of humankind, but history has forgotten about animals.”
“Every animal is equal to the human animal. Animals are only different species,” Stevan reasons. “Every animal is a person with very deep and gentle emotions.”
“Animals don't have the power of speech and their lives and fates aren't taught in schools,” Stevan states. “In our film, Animals: A Parallel History, we make a modest attempt to show people the history humans and animals share.”
Animals: A Parallel History is the first educational tool to illustrate how animals have become little more than machines for food, experiments, exploitation, and numerous brutalities. “We recognize the existence of a parallel history, a magnificent and glorious animal history,” Stevan says.
Straight about education and animals, Stevan states, “Children don't have a choice. Withholding vital information is not democratic and denies basic human rights.”
Like the German educationalist, Friedrich Froebel, who laid the groundwork for modern education, Stevan believes, “The purpose of education is to encourage and guide man as a conscious, thinking, and perceiving being through his own personal choice.”
“Education must present the ways and means of attaining that goal,” Stevan continues. To accomplish this mission, education must be properly comprehensive to allow people to make their own personal choices and not lack in historical facts.
Stevan is planning to take Animals: A Parallel History on a premiere tour, inviting teachers, educators, and media, to introduce the concept of Animal History in schools. “We want to encourage educational boards to teach children about the value of animals and how they have always shared in our lives.”
“This knowledge will encourage empathy and responsibility for the creatures around them and the world we all share. This revolutionary film is a key to better stewardship of the earth's environment and living beings.”
To strengthen the weakness and powerlessness of the animal rights movement, Stevan believes, “We need new and breakthrough ideas to raise the effectiveness of the animal rights movement, but it's stuck in the realm of public education”
“At present, we are witnessing monumental changes in the human-animal relationship and I want to make the strongest animal rights movement coalition with Animals: A Parallel History.”
Animals: A Parallel History is a self-financed project. Stevan hopes the premier tour will occur this year, but when and where depends on budget. Although the film receives support from the The Pollination Project, A Well Fed World, and PETA, a serious financial partner and donations to the crowdfunding campaign are needed. For more information, email Stevan Zivkov Andricin.