A Seat at the Table – Fall 2017
A Seat at the Table returns with an updated format for the Fall of 2017. Each month we will host one community meetup and one facilitated dinner. We learned from our Spring pilot that three community meetups per month were was too much for us as organizers and it created a lack of focus for engagement.
November 2017 – Listening + Learning
We are excited to announce the theme of this month’s ASATT: Listening + Learning. Over the past year, there has been a heightened awareness of and attention to incivility in our society and our politics. However, as a result of this heightened attention and awareness, are we progressing as listeners and learners?
Similar to many other initiatives state and nationwide, A Seat at the Table aims to bring people together outside of comfort zones to discuss social issues and build community. This goal is a part of the radical listening philosophy in which A Seat at the Table is grounded. A quick Google search for radical listening will result in a plethora of definitions and applications. For clarity, ASATT defines radical listening as the practice of intentionally quieting your internal voice and judgments and offering your full mental space to a speaker. For A Seat at the Table, this practice has helped us to ask more informed questions and enable worthwhile conversations. We invite you to discuss this question with us: how might we listen and learn better to increase civility in our interactions and conversations?
Are you interested in learning more about radical listening and how to practice it? Please join us this month. We will host a meet-up that will serve as a practice-space for radical listening as we think about this past year and how we’ll move forward in the future.
Community Meet up
Thursday, November 9
6:00 – 7:30 pm
Coffee By Design, 1 Diamond Street, Portland, Maine
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
5:45 pm – 8:00 pm
Grace, 15 Chestnut Street, Portland, Maine
About A Seat at the Table
An initiative of Treehouse Institute led by Chanel Jones (pictured right), A Seat at the Table aims to engage the community in having difficult discussions and conversations around entangled and complex subjects — race + privilege; sex, gender and identity; and climate change — through weekly meet-ups that will culminate in a family-style dinner. With 2017 looking and feeling as exclusive and divisive as 2016, it is important we all pull up to the table—baggage and all—and continue to build and strengthen a more empathetic, compassionate, and understanding community.
Looking For Resources?
We believe that it takes us all to build and strengthen a more empathetic, compassionate, and understanding community and invite you to host conversations in your home, office, favorite coffee shop or brewery. Feel free to use our conversation guides, which are available through creative commons licensing. This means they are free to you as long as you don’t try to make money off them, don’t change them for distribution, and give us a little nod.
As you use them, we’d really appreciate hearing how your conversations go. And if there are things you try that work well, in addition to what we’ve provided in these guides, we’d love to hear about that too.