Inequality in microcosm
For their Action Project ‘Talking about inequality’, Tess Luttikhuis and Annelie Boeren developed a short program to discuss inequality in Dutch society with 28 first-year secondary school students in Tilburg. They used an interactive game in which the participants get assigned profiles that illustrate how they are privileged and underprivileged in different ways. Pupils are not aware of this at the start of the game. Throughout the game, pupils experience – in microcosm – what inequality is and how discrimination impacts both individuals and society. After the game, a dialogue should be facilitated to relate different game elements to the world outside of their school. In this way, complex societal challenges, such as racism, islamophobia, socio-economic inequality and sexism can be addressed in a constructive manner.
Tess: “I realized that I initially assumed that racism, compared to the Netherlands, was much more of a problem in other countries.”
Civic engagement is integral to the Humanity in Action Fellowships. After the four-week on site program, Fellows realize an Action Project, applying their newly acquired insights, knowledge and skills and promoting democratic values in their communities. With this Action Project, Tess and Annelie wanted to discuss the theme of inequality using an intersectional perspective with a group that has not yet been asked to reflect critically on the issue of inequality.
Tess and Annelie are both confident that discussing the problem of inequality by appealing to young peoples’ imagination can have a great impact. During the implementation of their Action Project they were both very impressed by the personal examples pupils shared with each other and how they were able to link these to inequality that is experienced in everyday life. Tess and Annelie plan to play the interactive game with more audiences in the near future.