Tag Archive: Interaction Institute

May 19, 2014

How We Invented Illegal Immigration

 

This might be the most important seven minutes of your week. For, me, it was one of those beautiful moments when understanding history – a hidden story that isn’t widely told – helped me think much more clearly about an important contemporary issue. Aviva Chomsky, author of “Undocumented: How Immigration Became Illegal,” explains how recently the concept of “illegal immigration” was developed and how it was developed specifically as a way to discriminate against Mexican workers in the U.S. At the time, visas were not needed to enter the country; people from Mexico, many of whom returned seasonally, were considered workers not immigrants; people from China and other Asian countries were not allowed to enter the U.S. at all; and only people from Europe were considered “immigrants.” And, preceding all of that history of course, there were a couple hundred years of European settler/ immigrants who carried no documentation and were not considered “illegal.”

Link to audio

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April 21, 2010

What’s Power Got to Do With It?

Photo by Great Beyond

|Photo by Great Beyond|http://www.flickr.com/photos/tonyjcase/2759363747/|

A few years ago, I researched and wrote a masters’ thesis on addressing power dynamics in collaborative process design and facilitation.? I was doing the study based on great questions raised over the years by Cyndi Suarez (Co-Director of Northeast Action) – and with the belief that if power dynamics are not well understood and addressed, group process facilitators are likely to unknowingly reinforce the status quo – a scary thought for those of us working on social justice and social change!

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April 21, 2010

What's Power Got to Do With It?

Photo by Great Beyond

|Photo by Great Beyond|http://www.flickr.com/photos/tonyjcase/2759363747/|

A few years ago, I researched and wrote a masters’ thesis on addressing power dynamics in collaborative process design and facilitation.? I was doing the study based on great questions raised over the years by Cyndi Suarez (Co-Director of Northeast Action) – and with the belief that if power dynamics are not well understood and addressed, group process facilitators are likely to unknowingly reinforce the status quo – a scary thought for those of us working on social justice and social change!

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December 22, 2009

Love and Collaboration

Part 4 of  Three Lenses for Collaboration

The work of social change takes place in history, we are not the first ones doing this work, nor will we be the last.  We are part of that noble arch bending itself towards justice.  In the United States the history of social change is punctuated by the prophetic voice of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Dr. King called us to beloved community and at the Interaction Institute we look at collaboration as a way to meet his call.  I like to call this the lens of love.

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December 1, 2009

Three Lenses for Collaboration

The Interaction Institute for Social Change is a vibrant place, a real learning community; we are always seeking to be on our learning edge.  Our internal strategic process has led us to wonder how to define ourselves for this new era without necessarily losing our 16 years of experience and the power of our proven collaborative methodology.  A couple of things have become even more clear through this process.  It is clear to us, to our clients and partners in the work of social transformation that collaboration is what we do.

We might be working with a single organization or a group of organizations, we may be designing a learning event, a high level facilitation or a citywide change process, but whatever it is that we are doing – collaboration is at its core.  We help people come together and work together.

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