We try to stand in another’s shoes, and invite others to do the same.
Although we are currently unable to run our simulations, we know that it is more important than ever that these narratives continue to be told. And so we are reflecting on how to deliver our stories in innovative and fresh ways.
So when a storyteller offered to share his own insights about what makes a story work, we were keen to listen.
Tom Williams, of Prospect Arts, is a storyteller and film-maker, and a friend of Empathy Action. Prospect Films produces films that matter – including documentaries that give voice to the voiceless, and meet injustice head-on.
First, Tom was interested to hear what we thought. Our responses were all individual, but in essence were the same:
Tom agreed and elaborated: for him a story must ignite passion, and it does this by disrupting the narrative. Attention is grabbed through the telling of a shocking fact or a powerful statement – a problem – which compels a person to find a solution. From that can come hope.
At Empathy Action we strive to disrupt and alter perspectives by inviting participants at our simulations to question their own lives in the light of what is happening to others.
This year, the entire world narrative has been disrupted (in more than one respect). It is an opportune moment for us to reassess how best we achieve our ambition of enabling others to choose empathy, and – together – create a powerful force for change.
The hope in a story may not always be obvious or clear-cut, and may even – in many cases – seem impossible, but it is our joint responsibility to bring it to light and allow it a chance to grow.
Please keep an eye on what we, at Empathy Action, are doing as we navigate a new course through these fast-changing times.
As always, take care of yourselves – and others.
#chooseempathy #storytelling #hope #together
Tom’s latest project is The Final Fix, which examines the Opioid Crisis in America. In particular, it explores a potential treatment for addiction that is effective and cheap, but largely ignored. It is a powerful piece of storytelling, and – we believe – a must-see.