Holistic security - Collective Memory

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Title of the tutorial Protecting memory, protecting ourselves: collective memory as a Gateway to understand holistic security
Kind of learning session Holistic
Tutorial category Discussion
Duration (hours) 1
Learning objectives - Understand the significance of collective memory and the steps that can be taken to secure it.

- Provide means to think about security from a holistic perspective, both personally and within a movement.

Prerequisites xxx
Methodology Activity

Option I. Walking through our personal journey Italic text In this activity, participants individually create their own 'path' (represented on the floor by materials such as seeds, flour, sand, masking tape, etc) as a narrative of their journey in activism and their personal lives until this point, and perhaps also where they want to go. This activity is a very individual one. Participants are given at least 15 minutes to design their path and then take turns to walk along the path, presenting it to the rest of the group. The key is that this session is self reflective and allows people to review both what influences and events have led them to where they are now (particularly with reference to their activism), and also to reflect on where their path may lead them next. The activity can be influenced by the choice of shape: this can be pre-set by you as the facilitator, or be left open for participants to create their own.

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A spiral can be walked ideally first from the outside to the central point, beginning with where I am now and going backwards to the furthest desired point (maybe to the first trigger instance, or even all the way through childhood to birth) before moving chronologically back out from the centre to where I am now and further, where do I want to go?

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A maze shape can also be used. In this case the we have more autonomy over the path which we walk, we must perhaps also face pathways that lead to dead ends where we are forced to turn around. Option II. Drawing our collective memoryItalic text This is a group activity where all participants collectively create a mural to represent their own shared history. The activity is similar conceptually to the “Draw your Day” activity, but could encompass a much broader time frame and focuses on the experiences common to the group as a whole. The activity is easiest within a relatively homogenous group, but could also be useful in defining common ground in a heterogeneous group too. Step 1. On a large area of wall or floor space, spread out a number of sheets of flipchart paper Step 2. Instruct participants that they will collectively create a mural to represent their shared journey together. It can be a narrative (with a clear timeline) or structured differently. Step 3. In the centre, they could put a representation of what they are fighting for, what they stand for and who they are. This can be something that inspires them and reminds them of their principles throughout the training. On either side of this, they can map out their collective memory and the events, positive and negative, that have led them to establish and fight for this vision. Step 4. Give participants time, at least 10 minutes, to discuss what to put in the centre. In the other areas, they can work more individually on their collective memory Alternative: In groups where collaboration like this may be challenging, give each participant their own half-sheet of flipchart paper wherein they will draw their own journey, and eventually assemble all of them together. Step 5 Give participants 30-45 minutes to draw together and assemble the drawing on the wall. Additional step: Participants can use string and pins to make connections between the moments they have experienced together and represent the interconnected nature of their individual journeys.

Option III. Reclaiming our historyItalic text When working with a group who struggle against a State who re-writes their own history through control of the media and other outlets, an interesting variation on this activity could be to ask participants to bring news articles, photos and other media with them to include in the mural, contrasting the “official truth” with their own lived experience.

Number of facilitators involved 2
Technical needs Be as creative as possible: large space (indoors or outdoors), something to mark a pathway (either in a spiral, or maze shape) e.g. masking tape, seeds, flour, sand, pens & paper coloured markers, photographs, news clippings, nuts, seeds, stones, etc.
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