A BBC News item yesterday really disturbed me, not so much by its content, worrying as that is, but by its labelling of the people involved and its restricted framing of the issue. In short, the item told listeners that people who travel to Syria become suspect and when they come back are “a risk”, … Continue reading
A light in the world gone out.
I was taking photos of leaves on paving slabs when the man spoke to me. I explained that I use these random fallings in the composition of my paintings. This opened up a brief conversation in which I learnt: He lays paving slabs for his living. He likes the natural ones like the ones we … Continue reading
Busy today with my project advisory group, working through the draft of our EDiCT Manual. Here’s a sneak preview of the cover… When completed, the manual will introduce ideas about empathy dynamics and show how they can be applied in conflict transformation. Publication early in 2014!
My research found three key ways in which we stop empathy with others: lumping – “They’re all the same.” Seeing people only as a group and not as complex individuals. distancing – “They are too far away to bother with.” Positioning people as ‘far away’, metaphorically, from ourselves. blocking – “It’s just not possible to … Continue reading
I have been busy planning the last event connected to my art exhibition ‘Falling into Place’ which is at the University of Leeds until the end of the month. When my speaker dropped out because of a work commitment, I searched around for a replacement who could bring similar expertise in film making and conflict. … Continue reading
If you are in the north of England, do come along to the University of Leeds tomorrow. I am going to be ‘in conversation’ with Simon Weatherbed from the NGO Responding to Conflict about “Conflict transformation and creativity”. We will talk about our shared experience in Kenya last year, and the creative conflict transformation work … Continue reading
Criminal activity needs empathy too. Understanding how other people feel and think doesn’t just help relieve suffering; it may also increase it. Every time someone falls for a confidence trickster and hands over their savings, the processes of empathy have been at work, as the criminal finds the best way to convince the victim. This … Continue reading
We have listened to each other’s stories, launched a website, made videos, drafted a manual, created metaphors and eaten lots of biscuits. We have talked about growing webs of empathy to transform conflict. And we have made plans to use manual and ideas in current and future work. We are all very tired and ready … Continue reading