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Vol. XVII, No.2 Winter, 2003




WHAT WE ARE ABOUT


Please share with us what you are doing relating to nonviolent change. If you send us a short report of your doings, learnings, ideas, concerns, reactions, queries we will print them here. Responses can be published in the next issue.


Steve Sachs: I am concerned that the U.S. may soon be at war with Iraq and that North Korean nuclear crises may have any of several possible very serious outcomes; but I am hopeful that both situations can be reasonably resolved. I am happy to see that President Bush has learned something about dealing with complex international affairs since he came to office, but frustrated that learning has not been faster and deeper. I believe that lack of statesmanship, including unfortunate rhetoric, by Mr. Bush, precipitated the crises with North Korea, but I am encouraged by signs that enhanced understanding and improved diplomacy may now resolve it. In my own life, I have been enjoying advising on the putting together of a peace conference in the Black Forrest in Germany that I am looking forward to participating in at the end of May.


Darling G. Villena-Mata: I am doing more research into the areas of the unconscious's role and societal trauma. In addition, I have a practice providing consultation and training in that area in particular, and human relations in general. I will be presenting in May, 2003 at the Neurons to Neighborhoods Trauma Conference in Los Angeles on: Healing from Racism, Sexism, and Other Isms: The Effects of Societal Trauma on Our Overall Well-Being.

In that workshop, I will include trauma's impact on the ability to resolve conflict resolution with members of groups that one perceives as the 'abuser' group. In my work, I have clients who come to see me to assist them with their anger toward the dominant group in their lives. I have been utilizing some of the approaches that I presented in my book to address their pain, grief, and frustration. This is important, as the effects of the 'isms' can have a crippling effect.

Facilitating and assisting clients in this area has been very rewarding and has helped me to fine tune and expand the use of some tools to further assist in addressing the effects of societal trauma on its recipients. Too often we think of societal trauma as being 'over there' in someone else's country or society, when in fact, some version exists in all places, including our own geographic areas.

Consequently, I am now preparing to formalize procedures that can be utilized to assist individuals and groups regarding internalized and externalized conflicts experienced by the individual and members of groups. I am seeking funding to look at the role of those traumas arising from 'isms.' This must be addressed if long lasting resolutions to conflict are to occur. As I am not currently directly affiliated with any organizations, funding becomes harder. I am seeking an organization that wishes to act as my umbrella for this project. I will be seeking colleagues who may be interested at some later point in applying some of these procedures to their own work with expectation of feedback and collaboration. I eventually would like to offer whatever findings and finalized procedures to all who wish it, especially to those who are experiencing first hand, as recipients of such 'isms'.

I am also at the point of my life that I am looking to move to a place where I can settle down, be of service to my community, practice my work and to continue to expand my personal and professional horizons. Coming from a social psychological perspective and being a trained mediator, I am heartened that increasingly there are more interdisciplinary collaborations and exchanges vis-a vis conflict resolution.

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These articles and opinions of the authors do not constitute the endorsement of Nonviolent Change nor its publisher, Organization Development Institute, or any of its staff.

©2002, 2003, 2004,2005. All rights reserve. The Nonviolent Change Journal is published by the Research/ActionTeam on Nonviolent Large Systems Change - an interorganizational and international project of The Organization Development Institute.

Permissions: Reposting and reprints are encouraged, as long as proper source acknowledgement is given. As a courtesy, please let us know that you are reprinting or electronically reposting. It helps us know of the interest level. Thank you.