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ERIC Number: EJ1023867
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 2
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1089-5701
From Racism to Hope
Longhurst, Jessie
Reclaiming Children and Youth, v22 n1 p59-60 Spr 2013
This article describes the two-day "Healing in Racism" training received by Jessie Longhurst when she was a teenager in her hometown of Albion, Michigan. She accepted an invitation from her father to attend the program, and states that the training gave her a better understanding of what it means to be African American in our country, and also precipitated an unexpected change in herself. Over the course of the two-day training, the program facilitators presented the group with new concepts, including the definition, pathology, and history of racism. The lessons described how racism came about, how it developed, and how it affects our attitudes, feelings, and behavior, even when we do not realize it. The experience introduced her to the reality of the oneness of human kind, the fact that we are all one race--the "human" race, and it was only in accepting this reality that we could overcome our racial perceptions and struggles. Between the short informative presentations, the group broke into pairs to talk with people whom they had never met. The teenager paired with a young African American man to reflect on what racism meant in their lives, and as she listened, she began to understand that racism is more than the acts of overt bigotry, discrimination, and hate we see on television and in the news, but how he faced racism in his everyday life. As they finished the second day of the process, something else happened among the group--"hope." There was hope that each of them would leave this training striving to change themselves, for that is all we are truly capable of changing. Yet, if we can change ourselves, our change and growth may inspire others, such as our friends and family. The teenager concludes that when she left the "Healing in Racism" training, she was prepared not only to begin her journey in changing herself but to encourage others to do so also. [Postscript: Jessie Longhurst died on April 9, 2005, in an automobile accident while on a four-month study abroad experience. She was in her junior year at James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland, Australia.]
Reclaiming Children and Youth. PO Box 57 104 N Main Street, Lennox, SD 57039. Tel: 605-647-2532; Fax: 605-647-5212; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A