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Compassion, Storytelling, and Slowing Down

An evening with Author Anna Badkhen

Ours is the century of dislocation: one in seven people on the planet are on the move. But the dislocation that is not merely physical. It is also a dislocation of empathy, of dignity, of compassion. In these hyperinformed times, when everything is numbingly accessible, for all of our new digital interconnectedness we know each other’s stories no better than before.

The dominant narrative of the Other is imposed by the privileged. It is reductive, confining, and condescending; it furthers the othering.

What can we do to be more loving, more sensitive, to learn and relearn our shared humanity? We all possess a degree of apophenia: we tailor any input to our internal stories. We pay attention to what is dearest to us. I am a storyteller—I believe that listening to one another’s stories is key. For storytellers, then, this is the time to help make these stories heard. To listen closely we must slow down, make the Other dear. Let’s talk about how.

January 26, 2017, at 6:30 pm, beginning with a reception
Members $25, Nonmembers $35, Member Teachers $10
At the Dallas Institute’s Nancy Cain Marcus Conference Center
Online registration has closed. Walk-ins welcomed!

About Anna Badkhen

Anna Badkhen writes about people in extremis, exposing the world’s iniquities by honoring the lives these iniquities most affect. Her investigation into what it means to live in the Global South has yielded five books of lyrical nonfiction, most recently Walking with Abel: Journeys with the Nomads of the African Savannah, a book about transience (Riverhead Books, 2015). She also contributes to periodicals such as Granta, The New York Times, Guernica, Nautilus and Foreign Policy.

Badkhen is currently at work on Fisherman’s Blues, a book of magical nonfiction about the porous boundary between the terra firma and the unfathomable set in Senegal.

She is a resident fellow at the Tulsa Artist Fellowship in Oklahoma.

Photo credit to Anna Badkhen

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