The Power of Story

Applied ICDBarlow, Susanna. (31 October 2018). The power of story. The Nasiona.

“The collective story of what it means to be human and how we should treat one another is the foundation upon which our cultures, our religions, our rituals, and even our identities are predicated upon. Stories are the bedrock of civilizations and the mortar between societies. While there is much diversity among humans, it is through our shared story that we find mutual understanding and cooperation. It is also through stories that we create wars, incite violence against each other, and isolate ourselves from others’ suffering. Stories bind us to each other, and we can be bonded as easily by hatred as by love through a shared story. And when our hostility, our judgment, and misunderstandings cause us to battle each other, we still end up tethered to one another by the story of that conflict.”

One Small Step by StoryCorps

Applied ICDStoryCorps has started a new project, One Small Step, as a tool for encouraging dialogue.

“Over the last 15 years, StoryCorps has perfected a method for helping people feel more connected and for reminding us of the inherent worth of every person and every story. People come together to have otherwise impossible conversations, using our tools and questions. The microphone gives them license to talk about things they otherwise might not discuss.

Now, we are doing something different. We are asking people with different political views to record a StoryCorps interview with each other. Why? To break down boundaries created by politics and remember our shared humanity. To remind us that we have more in common than divides us and that treating those with whom we disagree with decency and respect is essential to a functioning democracy.

With One Small Step, we are seeking to counteract intensifying political divides, by facilitating and recording conversations that enable people who disagree to listen to each other with respect.”

Media Literacy Week Resources 2018

Applied ICD4th Annual U.S. Media Literacy Week, November 5-9, 2018.

“Media Literacy is the ability to ACCESS, ANALYZE, EVALUATE, COMMUNICATE and CREATE using all forms of communication. The mission of Media Literacy Week is to highlight the power of media literacy education and its essential role in education today.” Media literacy is a prerequisite for intercultural dialogue; without it, dialogue cannot occur.

NAMLE provides a wide variety of resources, including Free DVD/Streaming + Discussion Guide (for a limited time).

Media Literacy Week 2018 Continue reading “Media Literacy Week Resources 2018”

2019 UN’s International Year of Indigenous Languages

Applied ICD“On 21 October 2016 the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed 2019 the International Year of Indigenous Languages, beginning on 1 January 2019. The International Year is an important international cooperation mechanism and a year-long celebration, involving a range of different stakeholders, dedicated to preserve, revitalize, and promote indigenous languages; as languages matter for social, economic and political development, peace building and reconciliation.

Indigenous languages are essential to sustainable development; they constitute the vast majority of the world’s linguistic diversity, and are an expression of cultural identity, diversity and a unique understanding of the world. The disappearance of indigenous languages has a negative impact on areas directly affecting lives of indigenous peoples such as, politics, health, justice, education and access to ICTs among other things.”

embRACE LA

Applied ICDThis nice example of applied intercultural dialogue was published a few months ago, but I just ran across it:

Bliss, Laura. (19 April 2018). What happens when 1,000 strangers talk race in L.A.? CityLab.

1000 Angelenos gathered at 100 dinners in April 2018 “in private homes around town…through a city-backed initiative to spark civic and civil dialogue…embRACE L.A., a city council initiative to open up civic and civil dialogues about race…The goal is simply to create space for neighbors to talk frankly about race.”

New University in Exile Consortium

Applied ICDThe New University in Exile Consortium (New UIE Consortium) is an initiative created by The New School to confront today’s surging threats to scholars around the world. The New UIE Consortium is a group of like-minded colleges and universities, each of which is committed to hosting at least one endangered scholar. The founding member institutions are: Barnard College, Brown University, Columbia University, Connecticut College, Georgetown University, George Mason University, The New School, Rutgers University – Newark, Trinity College, and Wellesley College.

The New UIE Consortium is designed to do considerably more than temporarily resettle scholars in new institutions. Its mission is to create an intellectual community of the rescued scholars and of the universities that sponsor them—by hosting seminars designed in collaboration with the scholars and their host institutions, as well as, creating workshops, an annual conference of scholars, and other collaborative projects that will bring the scholars into frequent contact with each other and their host colleagues. These activities will have both online and face to face components.

See also the list of past related activities at The New School.

NOTE: As a result of a follower of CID who wrote to UIE Consortium, a caveat needs to be added: at this time the University in Exile Consortium is not equipped to assist scholars outside the US.

USA Far Behind Europe in Language Learning

Applied ICDMcCarthy, Niall. (14 August 2018). The transatlantic divide in language learning. Forbes.

The infographic tells the story of just how few in the USA are bi- or multilingual,  summarizing a Pew Research Center report using Eurostat data, thus the focus on Europe vs the USA:

The explanation for the gap comes from an earlier Pew Research Center report, this one on the state of jobs in the USA, which showed that only 36% of Americans reported that knowing a foreign language was an extremely or very important trait for workers to be successful in today’s economy, ranking it last out of eight skills for workers’ success.

Opera as a Way to Integrate Refugees (Germany)

Applied ICDBarone, J. (12 August 2018). A German opera spotlights the refugee crisis, with refugees. New York Times.

A performance of Moses, by the Bavarian State Opera’s youth program, written for refugees, children of immigrants and born-and-raised Bavarians, demonstrates how to integrate and welcome refugees while simultaneously giving them language skills and producing opera. “In the opera, a mixture of new music by Benedikt Brachtel and adapted excerpts from Rossini’s “Mosè in Egitto,” the teenagers tell the story of Moses — common ground for followers of the Bible, Torah and Quran — with Brechtian interludes about refugee experiences and current events.”

Our World in Data

Applied ICDOur World in Data is a non-profit, open-access project based out of the University of Oxford. It started out as a personal project by Max Roser in 2012; since then he has found a home for it at the University of Oxford, secured a stable source of funding from a range of supporters, and brought together a team of researchers and programmers.

Of particular interest to most of the followers of the Center for Intercultural Dialogue will be data relating to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – especially #16: “promote just, peaceful, and inclusive societies.”

Leading Intercultural Dialogues with High School Students

Applied ICDRafuls, Maylen. (26 June 2018). Cultural dialogue leads to empathy in Toulouse. CIEE Global Navigator: High School Study Abroad.

This article provides useful details about how to lead discussion of intercultural dialogue at the high school level, based on the work of Isabelle Jaffe, Director of CIEE Toulouse, with the High School Summer Abroad Program. She “facilitates cultural reflection by providing a space in which students can discuss new experiences and cultural differences and their reactions to them.” Others could learn from her experience.

Additional resources on holding intercultural dialogues: Constructing Intercultural Dialogues includes case studies on Intercultural Dialogue as an Activity of Daily Living, “America the Beautiful,” The Privilege of Listening First; and Key Concepts in Intercultural Dialogue includes Dialogue as a Space of Relationship.