We just completed the 2015 iteration of the Ohio Student Association (OSA) ‘Fellowship for Community Change,’ the organizer-training and political education program alongside which I have been working on the ‘Breaking Consent‘ action-research project.
The project lends momentum to political identity formation among contemporary racial and economic justice organizers in the United States. With support from the Institute for Human Geography, my collaborators and I designed a methodology of purposeful reflection (journaling and video/audio recording) and co-authored analysis for the 2015 Fellowship Program retreats. The project aims to understand and give shape to processes of political identity formation in a context of structural obstacles that frequently generate feelings of individual deficiency among young people who might otherwise organize to confront injustice. Our methodology is designed to transform these feelings of individual deficiency into a shared understanding of social problems that demand collective action. Three participants in the action-research team presented this work at the Critical Geography Mini-Conference in Lexington earlier this Fall, and we plan to submit the first co-authored article from the project in early 2016.