By Johan Maurer
Published: February 22, 2013

In 1968, I was a high school student in Evanston, Ill., firm in my loyalty to the Chicago White Sox and firm in my belief that my country was on the right side in Viet Nam.

One day I walked into the public library. In the new books display I found a book with a dramatically designed cover dominated by one jagged word: "WAR." The subtitle also grabbed my attention: "The Anthropology of Armed Conflict and Aggression."

I think I was the first person to borrow the book. I was fascinated by many of the individual symposium articles in the book, but it was the...

By Lucy Duncan
Published: February 19, 2013

“There is no greater agony than carrying an untold story inside of you.” – Maya Angelou

I spent a day with Pablo Paredes and a few of the courageous immigrant youth with whom he works when I was in San Francisco in December. Pablo is AFSC program director for 67 Sueños, a youth-led program that works to make visible the stories and dreams of undocumented youth who are often left out of the immigration debate.

Currently immigrant youth are characterized as either angels or demons: angels who are...

By Lucy Duncan
Published: February 7, 2013

On the occasion of the seating of the Maine-Wabanaki Truth and Reconciliation Commission


by Lucy Duncan

 

“People can be transformed by being open and human. We believe that people have a need to be heard, but how they are heard really matters – if they take the risk of telling their story, it needs to make a difference.” – Denise Altvater

 

 

Listen...to the story

 ...

By Madeline Schaefer
Published: February 1, 2013

We all have a story of self. What’s utterly unique about each of us is not the categories we belong to; what’s utterly unique to us is our own journey of learning to be a full human being, a faithful person. And those journeys are never easy. They have their challenges, their obstacles, their crises. We learn to overcome them, and because of that we have lessons to teach. In a sense, all of us walk around with a text from which to teach, the text of our own lives.

-Marshall Gantz, Why Stories Matter

I’d never been to Georgia before I arrived at 9pm last...

By Madeline Schaefer
Published: January 24, 2013

When I was 14, my mother took me to a weekend-long Quaker work camp in West Philadelphia, one of the last before the program was closed in 2005. I painted a hallway blue, prepared simple meals, and slept in a sleeping bag. By Sunday afternoon, I knew that I had been transformed.

Yes, being exposed to the struggles of poverty and becoming acutely aware of my own privilege was eye-opening. But what broke open my heart was sitting in a circle after dinner, listening to a local African-American man tell about his daily struggles with racism, and how its structural violence has...