Dec 13, 2021

radical empathy

I like the term radical empathy as Isabel Willkerson uses it. She says:

“Empathy is commonly viewed as putting yourself in someone else’s shoes and imagining how you would feel. To me that’s a start, but that’s not true empathy. That’s role playing.” 
“Radical empathy on the other hand, means putting in the work to learn and to listen with a heart wide open, to understand another’s experience well enough to know how they are feeling it, not as we imagine we would feel."
"Radical empathy is not about you and what you think you would do in a situation you have never been in and perhaps never will."
Her talk got an unexpected standing ovation. Here's the link:

Jul 10, 2021

Decolonial solidarity (new book)

On this blog I have tended to focus more on the colonial aspects of different solidarity campaigns, but I have certainly also tried to point to ways that different organizations and campaigns work to reimagine and rework solidarity in ways that do not reinscribe colonial power relations.

I have not read it yet but there is a new book out that focuses on these decolonial aspects of solidarity organizing. Teodora Todorova's book "Decolonial Solidarity in Palestine-Israel: Settler Colonialism and Resistance from Within" turns to lessons from three Israeli solidarity groups: Zochrot, Anarchists Against the Wall, and the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD).

Jun 23, 2021

hugs not walls

I have taken a break from blogging here as one of my covid survival practices, but as I come back to life anew it will include blogging anew. I have posted here repeatedly about solidarity actions that both push back against what we don't want while pointing, even if just symbolically, to the world we do want. One of my favorites was the braiding hair across border action. I'm also a big fan of the annual hugs not walls action, that just happened at the US-Mexico border last weekend where nearly 200 separated families met and hugged.