Good vs. Toxic Polarization: Insights from Activists and Peacebuilders
Friday April 9, 2:00-3:30 p.m. EDT
As part of the Horizons Project, an initiative of PartnersGlobal Institute and Humanity United committed to strengthening practical dialogue between the social justice, peacebuilding, and democracy communities in the US, we are examining ways to address the deep polarization that threatens the foundations of our democracy. On the one hand, polarizing narratives are a key tool of nonviolent mobilization and social justice activism; on the other hand, toxic polarization, where the other side is seen as an irreconcilable enemy, can undermine the legitimacy of democratic norms and institutions and increase the likelihood of political violence. Which aspects of polarization are good and normal, and when does polarization tip over into dangerous toxicity? In this TRUST Network event, supported by The PartnersGlobal Institute, Alliance for Peacebuilding and Humanity United, we discussed this important topic with scholars, activists and peacebuilders.
Dr. Peter Coleman, Professor of psychology and education at Columbia University, Executive Director of Advanced Consortium on Cooperation, Conflict and Complexity, and renowned expert on conflict resolution.
Tabitha Moore, Vermont racial justice advocate, licensed therapist, former law enforcement officer and juvenile justice administrator, works at the intersection of individual and community identity development and systemic oppression.
Dr. Maria J. Stephan, Senior Advisor, Horizons Project, and TRUST Network thought partner