This afternoon I had a great conversation with Jeanne Dasaro, co-founder of The New Prosperity Initiative (NPi), a nonprofit that publishes hopeful stories of people and organizations that are working to build social and economic prosperity in their communities.
I asked Jeanne for her advice regarding my summer project and she imparted some great wisdom. Specifically:
– When conducting an interview, do the video afterwards. Video has a way of taking the air out of the room.
– Beware: It’s easy to get caught up in an interview, lower your threshold for good answers, and then come home realizing that you didn’t get much that you can use.
– Phrasing questions to get a good answer is a lot harder then it seems. At the basic level it’s the difference between: “how was your day?” versus, “tell me about something that happened today”
Jeanne also pointed me to a few great resources that I’m excited to look into:
– I Heart Strangers: A running (daily!) compilation of photographs, and the stories of people in them. Created by Joshua Langlais.
– Theatre of the Oppressed: A theatrical concept where spectators are brought into the performance of a play about social issues. I’ve been thinking about how to mix improv with true narrative and this is an exciting manifestation of this.
– The Small Story: A site based on the belief that everyone has a story. Created by Cara Solomon.
– Positive Detroit: A website which publishes only positive news from the city of Detroit.
Here’s to positive narratives that build community and understanding-