STIRFRY FILM & PRODUCT REVIEWS
Movie Review: What a Real Conversation on Diversity Might Look Like Read Emil Guillermo's review in Diverse Issues in Higher Education, December 2, 2011
Sent: Fri, Jun 29, 2012 10:16 am
Subject: Your powerful book [Let's Get Real]
Hello Mun Wah,
I just finished your book and was very moved, in fact, it took me by surprise in that I read the last passage and then I read the letter at the end and the tears started rolling. It elicited such deep feelings of compassion because of all the suffering and all the triumphs and everything in between throughout the book; and this was all brought out by that last passage and letter. The last passage, written by a woman named Janet, helped me to really understand and feel the suffering and grief that white people feel, as perpetrators, and was so poignantly portrayed by Janet in her story that was so personal. I had never realized that before. Then reading the letter the act of reaching out and healing was portrayed as a culmination of that suffering of white people as perpetrators, as was the suffering of people of color healed. The story in the letter was so simple yet after reading the book and reading the passage of Janet it was so incredibly moving. Throughout the book the things that moved me most were when the participants told stories that were the most personal, that is, recounting personal experiences, the more detail the better. That has always moved me more than blanket statements and statements reflecting statistics and scholarship, though they do have their functions in the education and healing process. Your work on the book is wonderful–the vision, the organization, the editing, the pacing, the feel, really the birth. Beautiful, wonderful, so moving! Thank you, thank you.
From the Chicago Premiere of If These Halls Could Talk (Nov 2011)
"I want to congratulate ALL of you on creating an outstanding experience for the rest of the world to witness. I believe this film, and the ones to follow, will be an important contribution as a change agent for more awareness in schools and daily life in general, and for modeling how to have these challenging conversations. I know I have learned a lot from all of you and it's changed my life profoundly. The ripples continue...
I raise a glass to toast all of you now. And thanks go out specifically to the cast for taking the risk to share your stories, pains, and visions with each other and all of the rest of us to learn from."
Dear Lee Mun Wah...
With a degree in Cultural Anthropology, license as a psychotherapist, having grown up in the diverse melting pot of San Francisco, as well as being bi-cultural so to speak (Norwegian parents immigrated to US), married to a immigrant, with much diversity in my friendships, I pondered whether to attend your workshop on Diversity. So ... I'm thinking ... "What can I learn?
I attended and thank you for an exhilarating, honest, and kind seven hours (that literally flew by) of inspiration towards action. I learned on a much deeper and more productive level about this topic than ever before.
It woke up in me a memory of my Grandma Lena, my early mentor on the issue of diversity, as she understood what was necessary as peoples encounter one another. As a member of the Norwegian Church for oh so many years, she still attended services by herself. She was in her 80's when this story unfolded.
She'd take two streetcars across town every Sunday; a long journey. One day she arrived home and told us she'd been robbed on the streetcar. "A young man sat down next to me and put a gun to my ribs asking for money. I gave him what I had and continued on my way to church." When we inquired further, she said only, "I think he needed it".
Many weeks later, we learned this was a young black man from the Fillmore. She then said that her heart met with his need that Sunday morning. The legacy of this experience has fueled my life in so many ways. Thank you Grandma Lena, one of my early wisdom teachers.
Churches, Temples, Synagogues, Mosques, Sagas, Meeting Houses, etc. give us the ideas of love, respect, and connection but "people demonstrate this message".
A few months ago, I inquired of family members in Norway after the horrific shooting event. One responded, "Many of us in Norway are
learning to replace hate with love and it is a good thing for our people."
So ~ a couple glimpses that live in my heart. Your workshop woke them up and I thank you for your endearing and effective style of
leading the group and relating to all of us in such a deep manner.
Nancy Oline Klimp, M.F.T.
thank you for coming to antioch last night and for another powerful film about what real diversity is and what it is not. "if these halls could talk" should be mandatory viewing for teachers and leaders of all levels of our society. in addition to the film itself, an essential part of last night's learning for me was the discussion afterwards skillfully facilitated by you. i appreciate the deeper questions you ask and the way you use mindfulness practice as way of creating a safer environment to hold all that comes up for the person(s) feeling invalidated, spoken for and unheard. again, i thank you!