内向的な活動家が社会変革に貢献する3つの理由と具体例

社会

For the introverts among us, traditional forms activism like marches, protests and door-to-door canvassing can be intimidating and stressful. Take it from Sarah Corbett, a former professional campaigner and self-proclaimed introvert. She introduces us to “craftivism,” a quieter form of activism that uses handicrafts as a way to get people to slow down and think deeply about the issues they’re facing, all while engaging the public more gently. Who says an embroidered handkerchief can’t change the world?

私たちの中の内向的な人々にとって、行進や抗議、戸別訪問などの伝統的な形式の活動は圧倒されるし、ストレスを感じることがあります。

元プロのキャンペーン活動家で、自称内向的なサラ・コーベットからのアドバイスを聞いてみましょう。彼女は私たちに「クラフティヴィズム」を紹介しています。これは、ハンドクラフトを使った、人々をゆっくりと時間をかけて考えさせる静かな活動形式であり、同時に穏やかに公衆を巻き込む方法です。刺繍されたハンカチが世界を変えることができないと誰が言ったのでしょうか?

タイトル Activism needs introverts
活動家には内向的な人が必要
スピーカー サラ・コーベット
アップロード 2017/12/13
スポンサーリンク

「活動家には内向的な人が必要(Activism needs introverts)」の文字起こし

A few years ago, about seven years ago, I found myself hiding in a festival toilet, a music festival toilet, and if anyone’s been to a music festival, yeah, you’ll know that by the third day, it’s pretty nasty. I was standing in the toilet because I couldn’t even sit down, the toilet roll had run out, there was mud everywhere, and it smelled pretty bad. I stood there thinking, “What am I doing? I don’t even need the toilet.”

But the reason I went was because I was volunteering for a large charity on climate justice. It was seven years ago when lots of people didn’t believe in climate change, and people were very cynical about activism. My role, with all of my teammates, was to get people to sign petitions on climate justice and educate them a bit more about the issue. I cared deeply about climate change and lots of inequality, so I’d go and talk to lots of people, which made me nervous and drained me of energy. I did it because I cared, but I would hide in the toilets because I’d be exhausted, and I didn’t want my teammates doubting my commitment to the cause, thinking that I was slacking.

We’d go and meet at the end of our shift and count how many petitions had been signed, and often I’d win the amount of petitions signed even though I had my little breaks in the toilet. But I was always very jealous of the other activists because either they had the same amount of energy as they had when they began the shift of getting people to sign petitions, or often they had more energy, and they’d be really excited about going to watch the bands in the evening and having a dance. Even if I loved the bands, all I wanted to do was go back to my tent and have a sleep because I’d just feel completely wiped out. I was really jealous of people that had the energy to go and party hard at the festivals.

But it also made me really angry inside. I thought, “This isn’t fair, I’m an introvert, and all of the offline campaigning seems to be favoring extroverts.” I would go on marches, which drained me. That was the other option. Or I’d go and join campaigns outside embassies or shops. The only thing that was on offer was around lots of people. It was very loud activism. It always involved lots of people, and it was performing. None of it was for introverts.

I not only thought that that wasn’t fair, because a third to a half of the world’s population are introverts, which isn’t fair on them because we burn out or we’d be put off by activism and not do it. Everyone needs to be an activist in this world. And also, I didn’t think it was particularly clever, but I could see that a lot of the activism that worked wasn’t only extrovert activism. It wasn’t only the loud stuff. It wasn’t about people performing all the time. A lot of the work that was needed was in the background, was hidden, wasn’t seen.

And when I ended up just being a campaigner, because it’s the only job I can do, really — I was campaigning at university, and for the last 10 years, I’ve been a professional campaigner for large charities. Now I’m a creative campaigner consultant for different charities as well as other work I do. But I knew that there were other forms of activism that were needed.

I started tinkering about seven years ago to see what quieter forms of activism I could engage with so I didn’t burn out as an activist. I also wanted to address some of the issues I was concerned about in campaigning. I was very lucky that, when I worked for Oxfam and other big charities, I could read lots of big reports on what influenced politicians, businesses, and the general public. I learned what campaigns worked really well and which ones didn’t. I’m a bit of a geek, so I look at all of that stuff, and I wanted to tinker around to see how I could engage people in social change in a different way.

I think if we want the world to be more beautiful, kind, and just, then our activism should be beautiful, kind, and just, and often it’s not. Today, I just want to talk about three ways that I think activism needs introverts. I think there are lots of other ways, but I’m just going to talk about three.

The first one is: activism is often very quick, and it’s about doing. Extroverts often have an immediate response to injustice that says, “We’ve got to do stuff now, we’ve got to react really quickly.” And yes, we do need to react, but we need to be strategic in our campaigning. If we just act on anger, often we do the wrong things.

I use craft, like needlework, as a way to not only slow down those extrovert doers but also to bring in nervous, quiet introverts into activism. By doing repetitive actions like handicraft, you can’t do it fast; you have to do it slowly. Those repetitive stitches help you meditate on the big, complex, messy social change issues and figure out what we can do as a citizen, as a consumer, as a constituent, and all of those different things.

It helps you think critically while you’re stitching away, and it helps you be more mindful of your motives. Are you that Barbie aid worker that was mentioned before? Are you about joining people in solidarity, or do you want to be the savior, which often isn’t very ethical?

But doing needlework together, extroverts and introverts and ambiverts — everyone’s on the scale in different places — because it’s a quiet, slow form of activism, it really helps introverts be heard in other areas where they are often not heard. It sounds odd, but while you’re stitching, you don’t need eye contact with people. So, for nervous introverts, it means that you can stitch away next to someone or a group of people and ask questions that you’re thinking about but often don’t get time to ask people, or you’re too nervous to ask if you give them eye contact.

So you can get introverts, who are those big, deep thinkers, saying, “That’s really interesting that you want to do that extrovert form of activism that’s about shaming people or quickly going out somewhere, but who are you trying to target and how, and is that the best way to do it?” This means you could have these discussions in a very slow way, which is great for the extrovert to slow down and think deeply, but it’s really good for the introvert as well, to be heard and to feel part of that movement for change in a good way.

Some ways we do it is stitch cards about what values we thread through our activism, and making sure that we don’t just react in unethical ways. One, sometimes we work with art institutions where we will get over 150 people at the V&A who can come for hours, sit and stitch together on a particular issue, and then tweet what they’re thinking or how it went, like this one.

Also, I always think that activism needs introverts because we’re really good at intimate activism. So we’re good at slow activism, and we’re really good at intimate activism, and if this year has told us anything, it’s told us that we need to, when we’re engaging power holders, we need to engage them by listening to people we disagree with, by building bridges not walls — walls or wars — and by being critical friends, not aggressive enemies.

And one example that I do a lot with introverts, but with lots of people, is make gifts for people in power, so not be outside screaming at them, but to give them something like a bespoke handkerchief saying, “Don’t blow it. Use your power for good. We know you’ve got a difficult job in your position of power. How can we help you?” And what’s great is, for the introverts, we can write letters while we’re making these gifts.

So for us, Marks and Spencer, we tried to campaign to get them to implement the living wage. So we made all the 14 board members bespoke handkerchiefs. We wrote them letters, we boxed them up, and we went to the AGM to hand-deliver our gifts and to have that form of intimate activism where we had discussions with them. And what was brilliant was that the chair of the board told us how amazing our campaign was, how heartfelt it was. The board members, like Martha Lane Fox, who has hundreds of thousands of followers on Twitter, and highly influential in business, tweeted how impressed she was.

Within 10 months, we’d had meetings with Marks and Spencer to say, “We know this is difficult to be a living wage employer, but if you can be one, the rest of the sector will look at it, and it’s not right that some of your amazing workers are working full time and still can’t pay their bills. And we love Marks and Spencer. How can you be the role model that we want you to be?” So that was that intimate form of activism. We had lots of meetings with them. We then gave them Christmas cards and Valentine’s cards to say, “We really want to encourage you to implement the living wage,” and within 10 months, they’d announced to the media that they were going to pay the independent living wage, and now —

And now we’re trying to work with them to be accredited, which is really important. We went back to the last AGM this June and had these amazing one-to-one discussions with the board members. They told us how much they loved their hankies and how moved they were by what we were doing. They all mentioned that if we had been standing outside screaming at them and not being gentle in our protest, they wouldn’t have even listened to us, let alone had those discussions with us.

I think introverts are really good at intimate activism because we like to listen, we like one-to-ones, we don’t like small talk, and we prefer discussing big, juicy issues with people. We don’t like conflict, so we avoid it at all costs, which is really important when we’re trying to engage power holders, not to be conflicting with them all the time.

The third way I think activists are really missing out if they don’t engage introverts is that introverts, like I said, can be half of the world’s population. Most of us won’t say that we’re introverts, or we get embarrassed by saying what overwhelms us. For example, a few years ago, my mom used to send me texts in capital letters. She’s fine now and can do emojis and everything, but as soon as I’d see a text in capital letters, I’d wince and think, “Ooh, it’s too much.” I’d have to ignore it to read the lovely text she sent me. It’s a bit embarrassing to tell people that capital letters overwhelm you, but we really need introverts to help us do intriguing activism that attracts them rather than puts them off.

We’re put off by big and brash giant posters and capital letters and exclamation marks telling us what to do and vying for our attention. So, some of the things I do with people around the world who take part is make small bits of provocative street art which are hung at eye level, very small, with provocative messages. They’re not preaching at people or telling them what to do; they’re just getting people to engage in different ways and think for themselves, because we don’t like to be told what to do.

It might be wearing a green heart on your sleeve, saying what you love and how climate change will affect it. If people ask, “Why are you wearing a green heart with the word ‘chocolate’ on?” we can have those one-to-one intimate conversations and say, “I love chocolate. Climate change is going to affect it, and I think there are a lot of other things that climate change will affect, and I really want to make sure I’m part of the solution, not the problem.” Then we deflect, because we don’t like to be the center of attention, and say, “What do you love and how will climate change affect it?”

Or it might be shop-dropping instead of shop-lifting, where we’ll make little mini-scrolls with lovely stories about the story behind your clothes. Is it a joyful story of how it’s made, or is it a torturous one? We’ll just drop them in little pockets in shops, all lowercase, all handwritten, with kisses and smiley faces in ribbon, and then people are excited that they found it.

And we often drop them in unethical shops or in front pockets, and it’s a way that we can do offline campaigning that engages us and doesn’t burn us out, but also engages other people in an intriguing way online and offline.

So I’ve got two calls to action, for the introverts and for the extroverts. For the ambivert, you’re involved in all of it. For the extroverts, I want to say that when you’re planning a campaign, think about introverts. Think about how valuable our skills are, just as much as extroverts’. We’re good at slowing down and thinking deeply, and the detail of issues, we’re really good at bringing them out. We’re good at intimate activism, so use us in that way. And we’re good at intriguing people by doing strange little things that help create conversations and thought.

Introverts, my call to action for you is, I know you like being on your own, I know you like being in your head, but activism needs you, so sometimes you’ve got to get out there. It doesn’t mean that you’ve got to turn into an extrovert and burn out, because that’s no use for anyone, but what it does mean is that you should value the skills and the traits that you have that activism needs.

So for everyone in this room, whether you’re an extrovert or an introvert or an ambivert, the world needs you now more than ever, and you’ve got no excuse not to get involved. Thanks.

「活動家には内向的な人が必要(Activism needs introverts)」の和訳

数年前、約7年前、私は音楽フェスティバルのトイレに隠れていました。フェスのトイレがどれほど不潔かを知っている人も多いでしょう。3日目には特にひどい状況でした。私は立っているしかなく、トイレットペーパーもなく、泥だらけで悪臭が漂っていました。「何をしているんだ?」と思いながらも、実際にはトイレが必要なわけではありませんでした。

私は大きな慈善団体の気候正義のボランティアをしていたのです。当時は多くの人が気候変動を信じておらず、活動に対してもシニカルな視線が向けられていました。私とチームメイトの役割は、気候正義に関する請願に署名を集め、人々に問題について教育することでした。私は気候変動や多くの不平等に深く関心を持っていたので、多くの人と話しましたが、それは私を緊張させ、エネルギーを消耗させました。自分が疲れ切っていることを仲間に見せたくなくて、トイレに隠れていました。

シフトの終わりには、署名を集計し、私が最も多くの署名を集めることが多かったです。しかし、他の活動家たちがシフトの終わりでもエネルギッシュで、夜にはバンドを見に行ったりダンスを楽しんだりしているのを見て、私はとても羨ましかったです。私がバンドをどれだけ好きでも、ただテントに戻って寝たいだけでした。

その状況は私をとても怒らせました。「これは不公平だ。私は内向的で、すべてのオフライン活動は外向的な人々に有利になっている」と感じました。マーチに参加することも私にはエネルギーを消耗させました。すべての活動が大勢の人々と共に行われ、大きな声で行動するものでした。

世界の人口の3分の1から半分が内向的であるにもかかわらず、すべての活動が外向的な人々に有利になっていることは公平ではないと感じました。内向的な人々は活動から燃え尽きてしまうか、活動を避けるようになってしまいます。誰もがこの世界で活動家である必要があります。

私は活動家として仕事を続ける中で、静かな形の活動が必要だと感じるようになりました。私は大きな慈善団体で働いていたので、政治家や企業、一般市民に影響を与えるキャンペーンがどれだけ効果的かについて多くの報告書を読むことができました。活動家として燃え尽きないために、私は静かな形の活動を試み始めました。

私は活動がより美しく、親切で、公正であるべきだと考えています。今日は、内向的な人々が必要な3つの理由について話したいと思います。まず、活動はしばしば迅速であり、行動することが求められます。外向的な人々は不正に対して即座に反応しますが、私たちは戦略的である必要があります。

私は手芸のような活動を使って、外向的な人々の行動を遅らせ、内向的な人々を活動に引き込むことを試みています。手芸のような反復的な作業は、ゆっくりとしたペースで行う必要があります。これにより、複雑な社会変革の問題について深く考え、自分の動機を見直すことができます。

また、内向的な人々は親密な形の活動が得意です。権力者と対話する際には、敵対的ではなく、批判的な友人として接することが重要です。たとえば、権力者に手作りの贈り物をすることで、対立せずに対話を促すことができます。

最後に、内向的な人々は人口の半分を占める可能性があるため、活動家にとって欠かせない存在です。大きなポスターや感嘆符で注意を引くことは内向的な人々には効果がありません。代わりに、小さなプロボカティブなメッセージで人々を引き込み、自分で考えさせることが効果的です。

活動家として内向的な人々を取り込むことで、多様な視点とスキルを活かし、より効果的な社会変革を実現できると信じています。皆さん、内向的でも外向的でも、この世界にはあなたの力が必要です。どんな形でもいいので、活動に参加して変化をもたらしましょう。ありがとうございました。

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