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  • Writer's pictureReading World Cafe

The Room(s) Where it Happened: Let's Talk About Race

Our 2021 "Pulse of Reading" conversation series kicked off with over 60 participants. As always, these conversations are open to everyone and registrants were a nice cross-section of persons who live, learn, work, or worship in Reading, both in the past and currently.

If you were unable to join us, we are sharing details about both the process and the discussion questions for you the reflect on or share with your own groups.


PROCESS (World Cafe Methodology)

WC is an inclusive framework that brings communities together to connect and catalyze positive change. Additionally, our Pulse Conversations used both large and small group activities to:

1. Practice Inquiry v Advocacy

2. Acknowledge Multiple Truths

3. Share the air

4. Listen for patterns and themes

5. Expect Unfinished Business

This Zoom-meeting conversations used breakout groups of 3-5 participants who shared and and listened during four rounds of specific questions. Breakouts for each round were randomized with the goal to interact with as many different participants as possible. Between questions, groups then came back to share what they heard, noticed, or learned with the larger group verbally or using the chat feature.


QUESTIONS: Let's Talk About Race

Here is the question framework used for this conversation. If you have one or more people interested in talking about race, you can use these questions to being a conversation. Be creative! While this can be done over video calls, you might select one or more questions as a conversation started at the dinner table, or ask folx to journal their responses and share with each other via email. The important thing is to make sure your process is inclusive and open.

Round # 1: Introductions and why do you want to join a conversation about race?

Share #1: What did notice or learn?

Round #2: When and how did you first become aware of your "race"? What was the impact?

Share #2: What did you notice or observe about your own story? About the stories shared by others?

Round #3: What is at risk or feels uncomfortable about talking about Racism?

What might be the risks of not talking about it?

Share #3: What patterns or themes do you see or hear?

Round #4: How has discussing these questions challenged or deepened your understanding of racism? What's the next step for you? What might you want to learn more about?

Enjoy your conversations and remember that you can always build a brave space where you and others can explore questions that matter, encourage everyone's contribution, connect diverse perspectives, listen, discover, and share.

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