Speak Power to Story

by Michelle Lasley

Michelle Lasley is a mother, wife in Pacific Northwest learning to balance green dreams with budget realities.

November 22, 2011

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"Santa's" gift  to Levi.

Image by alexis22578 via Flickr

I have always loved stories. Give me a good fiction any day of the week. For example, I just read the Millennium Trilogy (over 2,100 pages) in less than two weeks. It was that good. But, I didn’t get the point of some stories until I took a little independent study at Portland State called Speak Power to Story.

We learned words like: meta-narrative. We discussed ideas of groups telling their own stories with dramatic play methods. We linked it together with how when we share our stories we share truth. We compared that to the stories we collectively tell ourselves and the actual stories that we are living. We juxtaposed the famed Booker T. Washington‘s stories with how many people can successfully pick themselves up by their bootstraps and make a successful living by today’s standards.

Mental power, notwithstanding, this was a hugely enormous class for how I frame the world. It was one of those “I get it” moments. It is the Occupy movement.

Every time you see someone share their story of how [we] are a part of the 99%, that is speaking power to story. That is showing how the meta-narrative under which we live is wrong. It showcases that we owe it to ourselves to tell a truer story. We owe it to ourselves to listen to others’ stories. We owe it to our world to stop, to listen, to learn, and to change and grow together.

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