“Bishop’s skillful use of language and style, though subtle and unobtrusive, captured the very essence of being homeless, of living in poverty, devoid of hope. I was inside the story from beginning to end. I became informed without being preached at. I was brought inside the lives of those who are disenfranchised and lost, and I witnessed the human will to survive.” — Wendi Stewart, judge for the 2016 H.R. (Bill) Percy Novel Prize
Breaking the Cycle of Oppression in Institutions
Beyond Token Change examines the patterns of oppression found in organizations and institutions. Anne Bishop uses a case study as a starting point to consider the nature of institutions beyond the sum of their parts. Bishop explains how institutions can go beyond token change to transform the institutional structure at a deeper level. She looks at the implications for the tactics we employ to achieve equity in our institutions. In particular, she proposes a method of focusing attention on the institution and its dynamics that goes beyond putting individuals within the institution “on trial” for discrimination.
Beyond Token Change is the sequel to Becoming an Ally: Breaking the Cycle of Oppression in People, Bishop’s classic exploration of the dynamics of sexism, racism, heterosexism, agism, ableism and other forms of oppression, including how indivduals learn and reproduce these patterns and the steps required to change them.
The Henson College Certificate in Community Development
This course was designed to sharpen social analysis and develop skills in leaders of low-income and marginalized communities in Nova Scotia. Taught by two experienced community workers and funded by two major Canadian foundations, it graduated 50 students over four years. Many joined the program’s advisory committee and helped the course evolve further. Grassroots Leaders Building Skills includes the complete course, with agendas for 25 three-hour sessions, detailed directions for facilitators and spiral-bound handouts for photocopying. Many sessions can stand alone as workshops on topics such as diversity, ideology, community development and building strategies for social change. Plans are included for adapting the sessions to middle class participants, post-secondary classroom settings, or as a series of intensive workshops. Introductory essays explore the theories behind the program and its pedagogy, the logistical organization and the experience of graduates. This powerful course is a valuable resource to anyone teaching social analysis and community organization skills.