Over 1,000 of you said you’d want to participate in an online course and community focusing on Social Justice, Minus Dogma. So I’m going to hold up my end of the bargain and make the thing.
First, I want to say how blown away I am that so many people are up for this.
For a few weeks, I showed a question at the top of the site to some readers asking if you’d want to participate in a course about “social justice, minus dogma.”
I’m wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was bracing for bad.
In the past year plus that I’ve been talking about Social Justice Dogma, I’ve become more and more aware of how pernicious it is, hearing from tons of you about how it’s showing up in your life/work, but I haven’t found a lot of hope.
One of the biggest issues is that, by its very nature, Social Justice Dogma is something that a lot of people aren’t willing, safe, and/or prepared to talk about. The first rule of SJD is you don’t talk about SJD.
So I’ve written articles here, and I get emails from people saying “Thanks for writing that. I see it all the time. Unfortunately, I can’t share it because _____.”
And I’ve been trying to get people to talk about Social Justice Dogma on a podcast, and I get replies like “This is such an important conversation. I’m totally with you. Unfortunately, I can’t be on the show because _____.”
In both cases, the blanks are the same: a list of reasons why being public about any of this stuff will be a disaster for them, personally and/or professionally. This elephant has found its way to so many people’s rooms.
The worst part: I totally get it. Talking about Social Justice Dogma has derailed my life. So far, it’s not something I can say — with any honesty — that I’m happy I started writing about.
But that does not a good recipe for articles or podcast make. How are we supposed to fix problems that nobody is able to publicly talk about?
That’s where the 1,000+ of you come in.
The fact that over a thousand of you want to learn about this — and will help me learn about it — gives me hope.
And even if all I have is hope, I’ve got plenty to work with.
About the Course + Community
I was holding off on creating even an outline of a syllabus until I knew it was something y’all wanted, so I don’t have a lot to share today other than “I heard you loud and clear,” and some really broad, vague ideas that I have in mind.
But I do know a few things. Whatever I put together will be…
- Uncopyrighted and offered in the spirit of the gift economy (like everything I make here on IPM and elsewhere). Meaning money won’t be a barrier, and I won’t restrict you using any of the course materials in your own community / work.
- Community-driven, participative, and peer facilitated. I will be learning from you, taking what I learn and doing my best to translate it into something that benefits us all, and doing what I can to create a platform where you can learn from one another.
- Guided by a social justice compass, with the goal of helping you better effect social justice, 3-dimensionally, in your real life, local community, and movements.
- Open to new learners on an ongoing, open enrollment basis. The first cohort to sign up with have a massive impact on the overall shape of the course — the structure, topics, community, outcomes, etc. — but we won’t be closing the door.
And that’s it. I have far more questions (and ideas, and vague excitements that I need to pin down) than answers right now.
I’ve already talked with some fellow social justice people (an educator, an activist, and a non-profit leader) to get their ideas.
I’ve been thinking about this constantly for years.
The ball is rolling.
More to Come. Soon.
I’ll update this post as I have more information.
You can sign up to get an invite via email when I open the course (if you already signed up, no need to do so again — I got you, boo).
My hope is to have most of this sketched out in within the next week or two, and be opening the doors to the course by April — at the latest.
If you’d like to help out, let me know.
I’m here to serve.