Activity time: 15 minutes
Materials for Activity
Preparation for Activity
- Read both stories and choose one to present. If you have time, consider using both stories.
- Print the story and prepare to read it aloud. Alternatively, recruit a volunteer in advance to read it aloud, and give this volunteer a copy of the story.
- Write on newsprint, and set aside:
- If you are a person who is culturally marginalized by race, ethnicity, ability, gender identity, affectional orientation, or economic status, how does your marginalization affect your personal moral and ethical decisions?
- If you are have a friend, family member, co-worker, or acquaintance who is culturally marginalized by race, ethnicity, ability, gender identity, affectional orientation, or economic status, does their situation affect your own moral and ethical decisions? How?
- If you are familiar via communication media, book, sermon, or other means with the story and experience of someone who is culturally marginalized by race, ethnicity, ability, gender identity, affectional orientation, or economic status, does your awareness affect your moral and ethical decisions? How?
Description of Activity
Introduce the story, saying:
A narrative ethics framework involves not just reliance on our own stories and experiences for moral and ethical guidance, but also attending to the stories of others. The story I am about to read is about a person whose identity, life experience, and social circumstances-their life story-not only shaped their own ethic, but also shaped their efforts to shape the ethical decisions and actions of others.
Read your chosen story aloud. Then, lead a short discussion using this question to guide you:
- ["Harvey Milk"] How did Milk's approach use personal narrative to change people's actions and choices regarding gay people?
- ["Olympia Brown"] How did Brown's work not only advance her own vocation, but also create a pathway for others to follow?
Post the three questions you have written on newsprint and invite participants to silently consider them one at a time. Read each question aloud, and then allow a minute or two of silent reflection.
Including All Participants
Create a large-print handout that includes the discussion questions to assist those who are visually impaired.