Book Circle: The Body Is Not An Apology by Sonya R. Taylor–For BIPOC

Date/Time
Date(s) - Oct 4, 2021 - Nov 22, 2021
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Virtual Event Link
Register for the Book Circle Here!

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The Body Is Not An Apology (By Sonya R. Taylor) For BIPOC

The Resource Center for Nonviolence (RCNV) presents this series of antiracism book circles as an act of radical education and collaboration. Our hope is to provide a unique opportunity to process the impact of the pandemic and respond to the renewed call for racial equity in our society. Our goal is to create a space in which participants may collectively and individually gain understanding that will result in healing, understanding, inclusion and empowerment. More importantly, they provide a way to maintain energetic human connections through virtual meeting spaces. Past circles have included participants from around the world to create transformative and educational learning spaces.

About this book

“Humans are a varied and divergent bunch with all manner of beliefs, morals, and bodies. Systems of oppression thrive off our inability to make peace with difference and injure the relationship we have with our own bodies.

The Body Is Not an Apology offers radical self-love as the balm to heal the wounds inflicted by these violent systems. World-renowned activist and poet Sonya Renee Taylor invites us to reconnect with the radical origins of our minds and bodies and celebrate our collective, enduring strength. As we awaken to our own indoctrinated body shame, we feel inspired to awaken others and to interrupt the systems that perpetuate body shame and oppression against all bodies. When we act from this truth on a global scale, we usher in the transformative opportunity of radical self-love, which is the opportunity for a more just, equitable, and compassionate world–for us all.” – Penguin Random House

In particular, this group will offer space to process the impacts of oppressive systems on our relationships with our bodies to discuss and explore tools, steps and resources to address these systems, and practice skills to ground ourselves and reconnect with our bodies

Who should join?

This book circle is open to individuals who identify as Black, Indigenous or other People of color (BIPOC) and who want to unpack and unlearn their body shame, learn how oppressive systems have impacted their relationship to their bodies, and celebrate our collective and individual strengths. This book is a good beginner’s space to process and unpack the effects of oppressive systems on our bodies. We chose to facilitate this affinity group to offer space for individuals who may be impacted by these oppressive systems in complex ways, and who need a safe container to process and grieve these experiences. We believe that offering this type of space can allow for more depth and safety in the circle. Kat and Aline’s styles of facilitating groups vary between exploring material/content, engaging in activities, creative sharing, group process and utilizing somatic techniques (e.g. grounding and mindful exercises).

A Note on Affinity & Mixed Race Groups

Due to the sensitive racial nature of the books offered, the RCNV’s racial equity policy offers separate affinity groups to respect the process of participants and to provide more safety and depth in the circle. Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), especially, may benefit from a unified healing experience within a safe container to grieve and process. Thus, book circles offered for mixed races and for affinity groups are determined depending on the nature of the chosen book and the skills of co-facilitators. Book circles are co-facilitated by facilitators of all races; and affinity groups are facilitated by facilitators who identify within that affinity group. Mixed race individuals are welcome to join affinity groups matching their self-identification. Our co-facilitators will do their best to support every participant in their process. Our book circles provide spaces to practice mutual respect, collaboration, and the creation of an inclusive community.

Your Circle Facilitators

Kat is a Filippina-American living on unceded Lummi and Coastal Salish land in Bellingham, Washington. As a licensed mental health therapist, Kat had worked in community mental health for 6 years, working with many individuals from a variety of marginalized groups including BIPOC, LGBTQ+ and disabled folks. Through that work, she had become increasingly concerned with the presence and impacts of oppressive systems on our individual and collective mental health. Kat has begun her own private practice in hopes to create more room for community connections, and has recently joined the board for the Whatcom Peace and Justice Center. In this life chapter, Kat is interested in methods of interrupting the impacts of violent and oppressive systems on our lives, engaging our strengths, developing systems of collective care and strengthening our relationships.

Aline is the director of the Whatcom Peace & Justice Center. For 13+ years, she has organized on a variety of intersectional issues, both locally and globally: from immigrant rights to police demilitarization and taking money out of politics. Born and raised in Brazil, Aline was involved with student’s movement since high school. In College, she co-founded a local chapter of the World March of Women in Sorocaba, SP. After moving to the U.S. in 2015 for grad school, Aline has worked as a writing mentor at Northwest Indian College and became one of the first members of the Environmental Studies Equity and Diversity Committee at WWU. Aline’s work is grounded in popular education, transnational solidarity and she is devoted to connecting peace activism in Whatcom County to a perspective from the global South. When she’s not at the PJC’s office, you can find her cooking delicious food, watercoloring or dancing salsa with Rumba Northwest.

Schedule and Logistics

RCNV circles meet weekly over the course of 8-10 weeks beginning in September 2021. Weekly meetings last 2 hours. This one will start Mon, Oct 4th and will end on Nov 22nd, Mondays 6-8pm PT (8 weeks).

Suggested donations to support the work of The Resource Center for Nonviolence is $25 per person, or more for those wishing to grant space to others. Any donation amount is accepted and no one will be turned away for lack of funds.

After you register and as our circle start date nears, your co-facilitators, Kat David and Aline Prata will reach out with more details. We look forward to seeing you.

Questions? Email muna@rcnv.org

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