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Published on January 16, 2008

Author: Rebecca

Source: authorstream.com

How We Suffer… How We Heal from the Wounds of Racism….:  How We Suffer… How We Heal from the Wounds of Racism…. John Alexander, M.A. and Rachel Saury, Ph.D. University of Virginia Elizabeth Thompson, B.A., M.T., UVa Henley Middle School, Albemarle County, VA Slide2:  Entering Difficult Territory Using Meditation, Storytelling and Social Science Fieldwork Theory Social science research methods include….:  Social science research methods include…. Observation Creation of a record Elucidation of patterns and processes Analysis Interpretation Slide6:  Into that army, that great army, He trampled it with his steed and jabbed it with his spear, And he slaughtered the army as though mowing grass. Ilya’s strength did not diminish, Then the infidel Tartars came, And they fell on the old Cossack Ilya Muromets, They fettered his nimble feet, And they tied up his white hands. The Tartars spoke these words: “We should cut off his reckless head.” From “Ilya Muromets” of the Kievan cycle Elucidating the role of narrative in the healing process…..:  Elucidating the role of narrative in the healing process….. Unconscious processes Identity formation Contemplation of the self….:  Contemplation of the self…. Participant observer of cultural forms vs. Observing ego of mind, body, emotions “Traumatic events are extraordinary, not because they occur rarely, but rather because they overwhelm the ordinary human adaptations to life….[they] involve threats to life or bodily integrity, or a close personal encounter with violence and death. They confront human beings with helplessness and terror, and evoke the responses of catastrophe.” Judith Lewis Hermann, M.D., Trauma and Recovery:  “Traumatic events are extraordinary, not because they occur rarely, but rather because they overwhelm the ordinary human adaptations to life….[they] involve threats to life or bodily integrity, or a close personal encounter with violence and death. They confront human beings with helplessness and terror, and evoke the responses of catastrophe.” Judith Lewis Hermann, M.D., Trauma and Recovery Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD):  Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Life-threatening events Nightmares Flashbacks Insomnia Detachment/estrangement Related disorders (depression, panic, etc.) Slide15:  "No 'healing', no apologies, no memorials, nothing can possibly compensate for the damage done and the pain inflicted....The only thing we can possibly do, twenty years too late, is to try and tell the truth." Eric Bergerud, Red Thunder, Tropic Lightning, Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1993, cited on the web site: http://www.vwip.org/vwiphome.html. Narrative of…..:  Narrative of….. Victimization Trauma Brilliance or genius Creative action Sexual conquest Hope Eternal love Etc Slide18:  Sultan Murad fell on level Kosovo! And as he fell he wrote these few brief words Sent them to the castle at white Krushevats To rest on Lazar's knees in his fine city. "Lazar! Tsar! Lord of all the Serbs, What has never been can never be: One land only but two masters, A single people who are doubly taxed; We cannot both together rule here, Therefore send me every tax and key, Golden keys that unlock all the cities, All the taxes for these seven years, And if you do not send these things at once, Bring your armies down to level Kosovo And we'll divide the country with our swords ..." Three-pronged heuristic inquiry::  Three-pronged heuristic inquiry: Narrative Suffering healing Slide20:  “[A]n understanding of psychological trauma begins with rediscovering history.” -Judith Herman Post-traumatic slavery disorder:  Post-traumatic slavery disorder Patricia Neumann-Toth’s theory based on her experiences with an African-American community in Maryland Practices of sexual violence in the 18th and 19th centuries Causing inter-generational harm Slide22:  “Witnesses as well as victims are subject to the dialectic of trauma.” –Judith Herman Experience is everything…..:  Experience is everything….. Successes….:  Successes…. Student testimonials Slide27:  Meditation gave me a clearer perspective than normal. Meditation made me set aside quiet time during the day to think and reflect about my problems in the last four years. Meditation allowed me to reflect on my day to day activities. Meditation gave me a new awareness of my inner self. Meditation was a source of calming that I’ve found in no other element of my life. To center myself leaves me optimistic and reenergized. Meditation was very relaxing and helped me to think about everyday me and allowed me to think about others I normally would not have, especially the one day we meditated during discussion for a lengthy period of time. Meditation forced me to look inside myself. Meditation was really hard for me and showed me that I need to spend more time reflecting on myself. Meditation forced me to become more aware of my thoughts and feelings. Meditation allowed me to really look back and refocus my thoughts. I was able to watch my thoughts and it helped me find out what was truly important in my life. Meditation was great! At the beginning of class, Rachel said “Americans suffer from busy-ness”—saying our greatest stress is from not taking enough time for mental clarity. I realized just how true it was. Meditation made me be able to keep things in perspective easier. Slide29:  The course told me that blending in was not a safe thing to do. The part about giving up your heritage hurting you surprised me. I thought “just plain American” was a healthy category, but maybe it isn’t. I learned sometimes I use “American” to mean “white”. I think this course would make other students think more deeply. I learned that racism is a serious problem and it’s my problem just as much as everyone else’s. That people are unique and suffer in different ways—stories are a process of healing. I think it [worked well to blend Slavic, African-American and Native American materials] because you are not attacking one group—you are just exploring how different all people are, and then you start examining. I never realized how much race makes you who you are. I learned how history is passed down through generations. I was one of those people that got all mad that an African American would bring up slavery today as if it affected their life and now I know it does and a little bit about how. Blending cultures worked well because you learned about diversity. I learned I am more ethnically diverse than I thought! I developed more cultural awareness. This class has lessened my prejudices. I learned from class discussions how much I really don’t know what it is like to be black, also how much being African-American plays in someone’s everyday life, that as a white person living in America I have been given privileges without being conscious of receiving them. I am more aware now of white privilege. I realize I need to make a conscious effort to not be a passive racist. For as open as I thought my family was and as knowledgeable about our background and others, I found there is still so much I don’t know. Challenges…:  Challenges… Slide31:  “I felt fairly comfortable. At times it was tough because I was in the minority in the class as far as race.” --African-American student in Spring ’02 course evaluation Variables….:  Variables…. Multicultural composition of class “Personality” of class Balance between intellectual vs. experiential Motivation to challenge root assumptions Slide33:  “I learned in this class to be open to the ideas of others and to simply listen without forming a response so that I can understand better….” --An anonymous student in Spring ’02 course evaluation Slide34:  “I learned that people are unique and suffer in different ways—and that stories are part of a process of healing.” --An anonymous student in Spring ’02 course evaluation Curricular design for many levels: Methods :  Curricular design for many levels: Methods Curricular design for many levels: Content :  Curricular design for many levels: Content Content Integration at the Secondary Level:  Content Integration at the Secondary Level Story and Healing http://www.faculty.virginia.edu/ storyandhealing/ Rachel E. Saury, Ph.D. res4n@virginia.edu John Alexander, M.A. john@virginia.edu Elizabeth Thompson, M.T. ethompson2@albemarle.org :  Story and Healing http://www.faculty.virginia.edu/ storyandhealing/ Rachel E. Saury, Ph.D. res4n@virginia.edu John Alexander, M.A. john@virginia.edu Elizabeth Thompson, M.T. ethompson2@albemarle.org

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