Earlier this semester I got a position as coordinator of Paso Doble, a culture and language exchange program, at Pangea World Theater. The objective of the Paso Doble component is:
1) To connect the Latina/o immigrant community and potential allies
2) To strengthen those relationships through bilingual and cross-cultural conversation exchanges; English and Spanish language-learning support; and gatherings focused on social justice and immigration issues.
I found myself applying many of the theories we learned in class to this project. The one that I found most relevant was Gordon Allport’s Social Contact Theory, which states that prejudices is reduced when people of diverse backgrounds communicate under equal status, are potential friends and have shared goals and activities (Rothenberg, 2010).
In Paso Doble this is put to the test when we pair one member of the Latina/o immigrant community and one person who self-identifies as an ally, for Spanish-English conversation exchanges. This dialogue and cultural exchange is further facilitated through monthly meetings in which all pairs come together for social justice and language workshops. At the beginning of the program the participants were a little intimidated by each other, but now it seems they are already on the path of making lifelong friendships. I believe that if we all make an effort to get someone we don’t know a lot about, we will begin to reduce prejudices and respect each other as humans.
Rothenborg, N. (2011). Continuum of Cultural Traits. Social Work 280
- Social Contact Theory
- Nature vs. Nurture; Appreciating the History of a ...
- MN Recidivism in Incarceration
- "We" not "Me"
- Concepts of Time
- Micro-aggressions and Aversive Racism in Minneapol...
- Few Disparities
- The Melting Pot
- Out of Time
- What it Takes to Belong
- Race Class & Gender By Britni
- Disparity and Discrimination Still Occuring In The...
- Humans: Out of Tune with the Earth
- Norms and Values
- How it Happens
- “In America We…” Who Determines American Culture I...
- Microaggression by Marisol
- Gender Identity by Amanda
- ▼ April (18)