Power and Privilege: Pursuing

August 8, 2011 Leave a comment

In case you missed my earlier posts in this series, I am raising a series of questions about power and privilege in social change work at the invitation of the “Walk the Talk” zine/book project.

Today is the final post in this series. I want to end with a deceptively simple question.

What do I want badly enough to pursue?

At the urging of my colleague Gibrán Rivera, I’m reading Walk Out, Walk On. It’s a learning journey hosted by the Berkana Institute to communities around the world that have decided to create the world they want. These communities are not waiting for anyone else to bring solutions to them. Rather, they are asking “What do we want?” and “How can we create it now?” Reading this book encourages me to return to a critical question that I revisit periodically. What do I want for my organization and our work as it relates to power and privilege? Not only that, though. What do I want badly enough to go after it? What do I want badly enough to invest in pursuing it—in spite of the obstacles and competing claims on my time and attention, in spite of the risks and the guarantees of uncertainty, in spite of the risk of rejection and the possibility of failure? I’m not sure exactly what it looks like. But it is becoming clearer about wanting an opportunity to struggle with these questions in a community of people who are committed to one another and committed to bringing generative, life-affirming answers to the question alive in our midst and in the wider world.
As you think about what it means to see, engage and transform power and privilege in your work, what do you want—badly enough to pursue it?

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