Dignity Letter — October 2019

Warmest Greetings

Thanks to everyone who supported our Annual Dignity Conference in Brazil . The heartbreaking fires in the Amazon Rainforest are another powerful reminder about the urgency of our efforts as a dignicommunity.

This Dignity Letter shares "Field Notes" from our conference and also warmly welcomes you to our upcoming Annual Workshop on Transforming Humiliation and Violent Conflict at Teachers College, Columbia University in New York, December 5 – 6, 2019.

  • The 2019 Dignity Conference in the Amazon: Field Notes from a Dignity Caravan!
  • Join Us: Welcome to Our 2019 Workshop In New York!
  • Good News and Good Ideas from Our Community
  • Plan Ahead: Our 2020 Dignity Conference in Spain
  • Dignity Studies at the Core of Higher Education — Learning Opportunities!
  • Dignity Leadership Possibilities — Turning Ideas into Action

Please note: Rather than sending numerous Dignity Letters throughout the year, HumanDHS will send longer letters. We warmly welcome your feedback about this approach.
Field Notes from a Dignity Caravan in the Amazon
33rd Annual Dignity Conference
August 28 – September 5, 2018 - Amazonia, Brazil
Cultivating Good Living Amazon:
Nurturing Solidarity with Mother Earth  

Field Notes from the Amazon

Our 33rd Annual HumanDHS Dignity Conference in Brazil was unlike any other we had before! The conference took place at the time when the Amazon had just been set on fire (starting for full on August 10, 2019) and everyone was in a state of anxiety, alarm, and emergency.

Because of the environmental emergency, the conference didn't take place in a fixed location. Instead it unfolded as a "caravan conference," where the conveners went to the participants to engage in dignity dialogues. This mobile methodology allowed the program to be responsive to the conditions on the ground, sometimes changing course from minute to minute. Thus it became a fluid conference, like a river that always finds its way.

The participants began meeting on August 28, 2019, in Marabá, the "gate to the industrialization of the Amazon," and we concluded the conference on September 7, 2019, in Belém, a place of immense cultural diversity, visionary history, and deep indigenous roots.
Learning from the True Experts
We had the great privilege of learning from the true experts of sustainable dignifying life, namely, those who know how to live with the rainforest, rather than against it — we admired the knowledge of a fishing community and a gardening community. We also had the privilege of speaking at the City Council of Marabá; we went to schools and the university (as it was still open for the last days). In Belém, we were honored by being invited into the Legislative Assembly of the State of Pará on World Amazon Day, September 5th.
Special Thank Yous!
We wish to express our profound gratitude to the inspirers, hosts, conveners, and organizers of this conference, Dan Baron and Manoela Souza. They are the directors of the Transformance Institute: Culture & Education and its AfroRaiz Youth Collective of the "Rios de Encontro" (Rivers of Meeting) project in the Community University of the Rivers in Marabá, Pará, Brazil. Our gratitude goes as much to Sandro Ruggeri Dulcet, who took over as convener of the second part of our conference in Belém. We thank Sandro and his wife Marlucia for their most generous hospitality! Furthermore, we highly appreciated the invitation of Congressman Dirceu Ten Caten to Amazon Day.

A few of the activities that made this conference so special!
WhatsApp: Dignilogues in the Amazon
For the first time ever, Gaby Saab initiated and hosted a new way to connect with the conference through texting. Using WhatsApp, a phone texting program, many participants were able to join in discussions examining ecological and political threats to the Amazon Rainforest and Indigenous communities. Please join us in thanking Gaby for her many valuable contributions to the conference!

The AfroRaiz Youth Collective of the "Rios de Encontro" (Rivers of Meeting) project advocates for a sustainable future through powerful dance and percussion! We are deeply thankful to Dan Baron and Manoela Souza for their inspirational efforts with this initiative.

At the opening of the ordinary session on the morning of Wednesday, August 28, 2019, the Marabá City Council welcomed members of the Rivers of Encounter Project. Six young people from the Cabelo Seco Community said good-bye before departing to Europe to defend the Amazon, to show the strength of culture and what they are doing to help preserve it.

Please see an article in the local newspaper Correio: " Jovens vão à Europa defender a Amazônia " ( Pdf)
If DIGNITY was a tree
What would we see?
Among its branches, inspiringly there would be three:
Character-elevation | Behavior-amelioration |
Life-quality transformation
Among the fruit Dignity would bear,
what would you and me share?
Dignicharacter formation | Dignilogue cultivation | Digneconegalization | DigniNature preservation | DigniHumanity education
(Please add to this imaginative piece!)

Inspired by these words by Professor Francisco Gomes de Matos, murals were painted by the pupils of Redjane Andrade, a teacher of English at a public school in Recife, in August 2019. It was made into a T-shirt that even Professor Francisco can wear! (please also see this poem in Portuguese)
“Our forest burns in flames, our animals are dying, losing their habitats and their lives, and all because of ‘progress.’ We cannot understand what kind of progress this is and whom it serves…Mother nature cries.”

"Dear Amazon...We value you now, but only after learning an important and valuable lesson in life: That something so natural cannot be sold as if it were property...We human beings did not value you soon enough, if we had all collaborated with you, today you would be beautiful and radiant."

The children from the Irmã Theodora School in the municipality of Marabá in Para, Brazil (August 2019)

Please read the entire letter:
A Gallery of Images from the Amazon: The 33rd HumanDHS Conference
We are looking forward to welcoming you to our...
16th Annual Workshop on Transforming
Human Dignity and Violent Conflict
December 5 – 6, 2019 — Teachers College, Columbia University, New York
2018 Workshop Participants
This Year's Theme:
Can We Teach Dignity?
Becoming Lifelong Apprentices of Dignity
from Childhood throughout All Ages

This is our very warm welcome to — and reminder of — our upcoming annual  Workshop on Transforming Humiliation and Violent Conflict, Thursday and Friday, December 5th - 6th, 2019, Columbia University, Teachers College, New York. 

Can we teach the dignity we need to see in the world? This workshop is an opportunity to explore how we can best deepen, grow, and practice the global message of dignity — today and far into the future. We will build on Lyndon Harris's concept of "becoming better ancestors" by devoting special attention to how all of us can develop apprenticeships in dignity that strengthen the lives of children, young people, and all generations. 
Many Ways to Connect and Contribute

Whether you join us as a creative contributor, a supporter, an active listener, a moderator, a dialogue facilitator, or in some other collaborative capacity, we want to emphasize that everyone in the workshop plays an important role in creating a climate of connection and mutual learning on the path to dignity.
  • We would particularly love to know if you would like to participate in a leadership role, for example, as a:
  • Careholder
  • Dignigardener (a.k.a., a dignifying dialogue supporter)
  • Dignilogue facilitator
  • Music/movement/poetry/art contributor (singing, dance, movement, etc.)
  • Videographer
  • Photographer
  • Or in another role that is not listed — We'd love to have you with us in this special way!
  • The joyful energy of our workshop is co-created by everyone, and especially by the generous collaboration and leadership of our returning HumanDHS friends!
  • Thank you for your loving support of this annual gathering!

All Friends: If you have an abstract or a paper you wish to share, you are warmly invited to send it to us so we can publish it on our HumanDHS website. Thank you! 
If You Would Like to Participate
You will find all of the latest details about the workshop — updated regularly — on the workshop website .

New Friends:  If you wish to join us, we invite you to send us a message and introductory information to: workshops@humiliationstudies.org. Thanks for including your contact information and any other details you would like to share with our community (e.g., CV, papers, articles, presentations).

We warmly welcome new friends to join us as supporters of all sessions. You are also warmly invited to join in our afternoon conversations known as "Co-Created Dignilogue Sessions" that require no preparation. Finally, thank you for making your own transportation and accommodation arrangements that will support your participation throughout the workshop.

Returning Friends:  We look forward to welcoming you again to our workshop! Thank you for helping us finalize our plans by confirming your participation and confirming how you would like to contribute as a participant.

  • We are in the process of finalizing plans for this year’s program. Please let us know if you would like to make a special contribution to a Pre-Planned or Co-Created Dignilogue Session. It would be wonderful to receive your confirmation of participation by October 15th or sooner so we can finalize the program knowing we have heard from you. 
Good News and Good Ideas!
Please join us in congratulating HumanDHS Board Member David Yamada who received the Bruce Winick Award for contributions to the field of therapeutic jurisprudence. The award was presented to him at the International Congress on Law and Mental Health , sponsored by the International Academy of Law and Mental Health in Rome! Congratulations, David!

Dignity and Humiliation:
A Radio Interview of Evelin Lindner by Will Hall
Description: "What is at the root of world violence? How does psychiatry re-create dynamics of humiliation and shame that drive people crazy? Is there a just and equitable way out of the spirals of attack and counterattack tearing humanity apart?" In this interview with Will Hall, Evelin Lindner shares her global efforts to overcome the roots of violence and war. She also describes the Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies initiative that encourages all people to treat each other with dignity.

An Interview: Listening for Peace
Yoav Peck is co-director of the Sulha Peace Project, an organization that specializes in facilitating positive, peaceful encounters between Israelis and Palestinians where the focus is on listening – truly listening – to each other. In this interview with Marian Brehmer, Yoav speaks about the project and the experience of listening in this way: "The deeper experience of listening is about fully being with people"... "It is all about building trust."

Free Yourself When Conflict Resolution Fails:
TEDx Talk with Jennifer Goldman-Wetzler
Jennifer Goldman-Wetzler, a longtime member of the HumanDHS community, "helps us see that when our attempts to resolve conflict fail, we can free ourselves by doing something different and taking pattern-breaking action." Her TEDx talk is based on her soon to be released book, Optimal Outcomes: Free Yourself from Conflict at Work, at Home, and in Life (HarperBusiness, February 25, 2020).

In addition to the video, please read more here or download a free guide based on the book.
New Book by David Y. F. Ho:
 Rewriting Psychology
In his new book, HumanDHS member David Ho asks, "Of what use is psychology if it does not help to solve the pressing problems of the day at the individual and collective levels?" David "shies away from providing ready-made answers but spares no effort in stirring the reader to ponder questions about human nature and behavior."

A Chinese Translation of
"Making Enemies"
The Chinese translation of Evelin Lindner's book, Making Enemies: Humiliation and International Conflict, is out! Liu Lanzhi, professor in English teaching in Beijing, worked tirelessly on the translation since 2011. Join us in offering our most heartfelt gratitude!

树敌 : 侮辱与国际冲突
The book is available from Dangdang or Jd.com.

A Special Tribute to Evelin Lindner:
Book to Be Released Soon!
Dignity Press will soon be releasing Human Dignity: Practices, Discourses, and Transformations, a book offering essays on dignity studies honoring the life and work of Evelin Lindner. The editors, Chipamong Chowdhury and Michael Britton, have brought together a diverse group of scholars and activists to contribute to this very special publication.
Evelin Lindner's New Book:
Coming in 2020!
HumanDHS Founding President Evelin Lindner is in the final stages of publishing her new book, From Humiliation to Dignity: For a Future of Global Solidarity, which includes a foreword by Howard Richards.

A digital version of this publication, with full endnotes, will soon be downloadable from Evelin Lindner's webpage for the book.
Do You Have Dignity News?
We love sharing the good news that grows out of the global efforts of our HumanDHS community!

If you would like to share your dignity "good news," "positive progress," or "promising practices," you are warmly invited to send it to our attention: humandhs@humiliationstudies.org.
Announcing the 2020 Dignity Conference in Spain
35th Annual HumanDHS Conference

Global Vulnerabilities —
From Humiliation to Dignity and Solidarity
Please save these dates!
September 21 – 24, 2020
Madrid, Spain

The conference is hosted by the National Distance Education University/Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED), and its Faculty of Psychology/Facultad de Psicología, in Madrid, Spain, in cooperation with the World Dignity University initiative. We very much thank Saulo Fernández, Associate Professor at the Facultad de Psicología, UNED, for convening this conference together with Professor Emeritus José Francisco Morales Domínguez at UNED.

Dignity Studies — Learning Opportunities!
The Western Institute for Social Researc h (WISR) and the World Dignity University initiative (WDUi) are continuing their partnership by seeking three or more people who would like to study together as a cohort group pursuing BS, MS, or EdD degrees. WISR is a degree-granting institution partnering with the WDUi that enables members of the HumanDHS community to pursue the academic degrees in areas relating to dignity.

WISR’s mission is strongly compatible with the commitments and values of HumanDHS, the organizational home of the WDUi. WISR helps students build bridges toward their personal and professional goals through action projects, research, and writing that leads to a sustainable and just future for all.
Dignity Leadership Possibilities for You!
Are you looking for opportunities to make significant contributions to building a better world? Please allow us to invite you to consider joining with us in our collaborative work for dignity!

All our dignity work is a labor of love. We are looking for visionary individuals who wish to make a substantial commitment, offering their full-time focus, expertise, and energy as their gift to help us increase dignity throughout the world. This type of leadership involves practicing sophisticated dignity skills to encourage and inspire the efforts of our global members who wish to contribute, but have limited time available.

In particular, we invite those who would like to take on leadership roles supporting large-scale dignity projects, such as the World Dignity University initiative . We are extremely thankful to Uli Spalthoff for creating a wonderful platform for us, from which we can continue to grow into the future! 

We warmly invite you to share your leadership skills by joining with us to build dignity in the world. Computer knowledge would be essential. Ideally, this might include knowledge of Joomla, the capability to program using Python, Django, databases, and html. A person who knows how to program in other computer languages could learn all of this within several weeks.
Thank you for all of your efforts to bring dignity into the lives of all people!

Evelin Lindner , MD, PhDs, Founding President
Linda Hartling , PhD, Director
Uli Spalthoff , PhD, Director of Project Development and Systems Administration 
Michael Britton , EdD, PhD, Board Member 
Richard Slaven , PhD, Director of Dignifunding
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