Friday, January 22, 2010

Witnessing Haiti 1/21

Carly Yuenger

On yesterday's show we took the time to talk about our emotional reaction to the devastation in Haiti and about how witnessing the suffering of others, as difficult as it is, can be productive.

Witnessing pain and destruction can make us feel numb and disconnected. It can even bolster negative stereotypes. But, as our guests and callers pointed out, it can also bring about empathy, solidarity, political resolve, and understanding.

Take a listen as our guests, Kaethe (kay-tah) Weingarten, a Harvard professor of psychology and the director of the Witnessing Project, and Carrie Rentschler, a communications professor at McGill, talk us through the pitfalls and potentials of witnessing.

Or, leave a comment below with your thoughts:
  • How has the media coverage of Haiti made you feel?
  • How do you keep from feeling "compassion fatigue"?
  • How can we transform our concern for the people of Haiti into something that lasts after the media coverage subsides?

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