Here's an exercise for a small group I learned from Elisabeth Weingraber-Pircher and am adapting to my interest in exploring cultural identities.
Direct the group in the following way:
- Close your eyes.
- When you open your eyes, you will be an architect. (Pause briefly). Now open your eyes. Let your eyes wander about the room. What do you notice? (Pause again). Share with the group.
- Close your eyes again.
- When you open your eyes, you will be the parent of a toddler (Pause briefly). Now open your eyes. Let your eyes wander about the room. What do you notice? (Pause again). Share with the group.
You may ask them to do this a third time from the perspective of another kind of person or alter the types of persons chosen for the first two experiences, or simply being oneself.
Debrief by discussing the cultural roles we belong to and live out direct our attention, bring certain things to the foreground, are let us see our context in a certain way. This is culture helping us to manage our environment. Discuss how our cultural identities empower us and limit us and challenge our flexibility with and responses to others.
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