Barriers to Bridging: Building Relational Skills to Connect Across Difference

Location: Kuppenhalle

When it comes to addressing othering and building a world in which everyone gets to belong, it can be tempting to orient our attention solely to the systems that perpetuate that othering, to focus our critiques on the actors we feel responsible for othering ideologies, and to engage only our intellect in the heavy work of socio-political change and movement-building. But is there more that might be required of us; from the inside-out, from our hearts and our humanity, from ourselves and with each other?

Are our relationships fit for the work of bridging across divides of difference? Are we? When we set ourselves to the work of bridging for the sake of democracy, will we be ready? What will get in our way?

This session will guide you to turn your attention to the personal and interpersonal dynamics that get in the way of the work of bridging. We will start with an introduction to some of the most common "ways of being" we see show up time and again in our relationships and across movements that create obstacles to relating to our differences and our commonalities. We’ll give them name and definition, and provide examples from our work to bring them to life.

We will then hold space for small group reflection and exploration of the barriers you see showing up in your own work, your participation in them, and look ahead to what might be needed to overcome them.

Presented by Held

Held is a partnership of practitioners, educators and facilitators who provide learning and hold space for people to have the conversations they need to have, and take responsibility for their relationships in service of collective liberation.

Friday, October 27, 2023