Speaking Out While Speaking In
Transforming Intergroup Dialogues With Mindfulness-Based Anti-Racist Practices
Keywords:Mindfulness, Intergroup Dialogue, Insight Dialogue, Anti-Racism, Anti-Oppression, Dialogic Pedagogy, Social Justice, Higher Education
As a co-facilitator for the Intergroup Dialogue Program’s (IGD) course, Dialogue on Race and Ethnicity, at a private, East Coast, predominantly and historically white institution, my role is to help undergraduate students grapple with the complex emotions that King (2018) describes as a manifestation of participating in conversations on race, oppression, and identity. Within the IGD classroom, we implement a research-based curriculum designed to promote “consciousness raising, build relationships across differences and conflicts, and strengthen individual and collective capacities to promote social justice” (Zúñiga, Nagda, Chesler, & Cytron-Walker, 2007, p. 9). Understanding one’s situatedness within powerful historical systems and recognizing one’s peers’ contributions to upholding and/or dismantling institutional forces is foundational to the coalition-building necessary for collective societal liberation. Through an integration of IGD with intentionally crafted mindful dialogic scaffolds that further extend such transformative external dialogues into the personal realm, it becomes possible to guide participants into dialogues with their own selves. By infusing the Intergroup Dialogue model with an anti-racist, mindfulness-based framework rooted in a problematizing and anti-oppression reimagining of Kramer’s (2003) Insight Dialogue guidelines, I hope we can meet the objectives of critical dialogic pedagogy and simultaneously seek a coalition-based liberation that acknowledges that, for many, the “way out” has always been “in” (Hanh, 2001).
Baker-Bell, A. (2020). Linguistic justice: Black languages, literacy, identity, and pedagogy. Routledge.
Berila, B. (2014). Contemplating the effects of oppression: Integrating mindfulness into diversity classrooms. The Journal of Contemplative Inquiry, 1(1), 55–68.
Bohm, D. (2013). On dialogue (1st ed.). Routledge.
Brown, A. C. (2018). I’m still here: Black dignity in a world made for whiteness. Convergent.
Brown C. M., & Dancy, E. T. (2010). Predominantly white institutions. In K. Lomotey (Ed.), Encyclopedia of African American education (pp. 524-526). SAGE Publications.
Cooper, B. (2018). Eloquent rage: A Black feminist discovers her superpower. Picador
Collins, P. H. (2002). Black feminist thought: Knowledge, consciousness, and the politics of empowerment. Routledge.
Davis, E. (2021). Reclaiming the body: Racial embodiment and emotions as a pedagogical practice in intergroup dialogue. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Dwyer, B., Gigliotti, A., & Lee, H. H. (2014). Intergroup dialogue: Mindfulness and leadership development for social change. In K.G. Schuyler, J. E. Baugher, K. Jironet, & L. Lid-Falkman (Eds.), Leading with spirit, presence, and authenticity: A volume in the international leadership association series, building leadership bridges. Wiley.
Ford, K. A. (2012). Shifting white ideological scripts: The educational benefits of inter-and intraracial curricular dialogues on the experiences of white college students. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, 5(3), 138-158. doi:10.1037/a0028917
Ford, K. A., & Malaney, V. K. (2012). “I now harbor more pride in my race”: The educational benefits of inter- and intraracial dialogues on the experiences of students of color and multiracial students. Equity & Excellence in Education, 45(1), 14-35. https://doi.org/10.1080/10665684.2012.643180
Freire, P. (2000). Pedagogy of the oppressed. Continuum International Publishing Group Inc.
Gorski, P. C. (2015). Relieving Burnout and the “Martyr Syndrome” Among Social Justice Education Activists: The Implications and Effects of Mindfulness. The Urban Review, (4), 696. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11256-015-0330-0
Haddix, M. M. (2016). Cultivating racial and linguistic diversity in literacy teacher education: Teachers like me. Routledge.
Hanh, T. N. (2001). The way out is in: Zen calligraphy of Thich Nhat Hanh. Thames and Hudson.
Haraway, D. (1988). Situated knowledges: The science question in feminism and the privilege of partial perspective. Feminist studies, 14(3), 575-599.
Harro, B. (2018). The cycle of socialization. In M. Adams et al. (Eds.), Readings for diversity and social justice (4th ed., pp. 27-33). Routledge.
hooks, b. (1991). Theory as liberatory practice. Yale Journal of Law and Feminism, 4(1), 1-12.
Keator, M., Savage, W., Foley, A., Furtado, M., Hussein, H., Raikhman, M., & Gray, J. (2017). Interfaith dialogue: the art of listening. The Journal of Contemplative Inquiry, 4(1), pp. 27-46.
King, R. (2018). Mindful of race: Transforming racism from the inside out. Sounds True.
Kovach, M. E. (2010). Indigenous methodologies: Characteristics, conversations, and contexts. University of Toronto Press.
Kramer, G. (2003). Meditating together, speaking from silence: The practice of Insight Dialogue. (2nd ed.). Metta Foundation.
Kramer, G. (2007). Insight dialogue: The interpersonal path to freedom. Shambhala Publications.
Kramer, G. (2019, January 13). New guideline wording: Attune to emergence. Gregory Kramer: Meditation Teacher and Author. https://gregorykramer.org/new-guideline-wording-attune-to-emergence/
Lorde, A. (2007). The transformation of silence into language and action. In Sister outsider (pp. 40-44). Crossing Press.
Lorde, A. (2007). The uses of anger: Women responding to racism. In Sister outsider (pp. 120-129). Crossing Press.
Love, B. L. (2019). We want to do more than survive: Abolitionist teaching and the pursuit of educational freedom. Beacon Press.
Magee, R. V. (2016). Moving together from colorblindness to colorInsight: Contemplative inquiry, research and practice in the work of transformative justice. Keynote speech presented at the 2016 International Symposium for Contemplative Studies: Mind and Life Institute Conference, San Diego, CA. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xcNaWUt_uk&index=9&list=PLOafJ4rP1PHx3puZGREfM8quSnVaDLrdG
Matias, C. E. (2016). Feeling white: Whiteness, emotionality, and education. Sense Publishers.
Menzies, R. J., Reaume, G., & LeFrançois, B. A. (Eds.). (2013). Mad matters: A critical reader in Canadian mad studies. Canadian Scholars’ Press Inc.
Morgan, J. (2019). Why we get off: Moving towards a Black feminist politics of pleasure. In A. M. Brown (Ed.), Pleasure activism: The politics of feeling good (pp. 81-97). AK Press.
Pierce, Y. (2018, January 16). Righteous anger, Black Lives Matter, and the legacy of King. Berkley Center. https://berkleycenter.georgetown.edu/responses/righteous-anger-black-lives-matter-and-the-legacy-of-king
Price, M. (2014). Mad at school: Rhetorics of mental disability and academic life. The University of Michigan Press.
Ricketts, R. (2021). Do better: Spiritual activism for fighting and healing from white supremacy. Atria Books.
Rocha, T. (2014). The dark knight of the soul. The Atlantic. Retrieved from https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2014/06/the-dark-knight-of-the-souls/37276
Rothberg, D. (2006). The engaged spiritual life: A Buddhist approach to transforming ourselves and the world. Beacon Press.
Saad, L. F. (2020). Me and white supremacy: Combat racism, change the world, and become a good ancestor. Sourcebooks.
Sharpe, C. (2016). In the wake: On Blackness and being. Duke University Press.
Sins Invalid. (2019). Skin, tooth, and bone: The basis of movement is our people, a disability justice primer. (2nd ed.). Sins Invalid.
Steinfeld, J., & Jean, M. (2020). Mindful practices to interrupt white supremacy in service learning education. The Journal of Contemplative Inquiry, 6(1), 95-119.
Syedullah, J. (2016). The abolition of whiteness. In a. K. williams, R. Owens, & J. Syedullah (Eds.), Radical Dharma: Talking race, love, and liberation (pp. 15-23). North Atlantic Books.
Thom, K. C. (2019). I hope we choose love: A trans girl’s notes from the end of the world. Arsenal Pulp Press.
Tuck, E. & Yang, K.W. (2014) R-words: Refusing research. In D. Paris & M. T. Winn (Eds.), Humanizing research: Decolonizing qualitative inquiry with youth and communities (pp. 223-248). SAGE.
williams, a. K., Owens, L. R., & Syedullah, J. (2016). Radical dharma: Talking race, love, and liberation. North Atlantic Books.
Wozolek, B. (2015). “What are you anyway?”: Racial fatigue as a daily experience in public schools. In K. Fasching-Varner, K. A. Albert, R. W. Mitchell, & C. Allen (Eds.), Racial battle fatigue in higher education (pp. 17-20). Rowman & Littlefield.
Zúñiga, X. (2003). Bridging Differences through Dialogue. About Campus, 7(6), 8–16. Retrieved from https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=eric&AN=EJ662305&site=eds-live&scope=site
Zúñiga, X., Nagda, B. R. A., Chesler, M., & Cytron-Walker, A. (2007). Intergroup Dialogue in higher education: Meaningful learning about social-justice. Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Zúñiga, X., Lopez, G., & Ford, K. (2012). Intergroup Dialogue: Critical Conversations About Difference, Social Identities, and Social Justice: Guest Editors’ Introduction. Equity & Excellence in Education, 45(1), 1–13. https://doi.org/10.1080/10665684.2012.646903
Zúñiga, X., Mildred, J., Varghese, R., DeJong, K., & Keehn, M. (2012). Engaged Listening in Race/Ethnicity and Gender Intergroup Dialogue Courses. Equity & Excellence in Education, 45(1), 80–99. Retrieved from http://ezproxyles.flo.org/login?url=https://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=eric&AN=EJ955888&site=eds-live&scope=site