Stories are the way we understand and make sense of the world we find ourselves in. Storytelling has a transformative power to allow us to see the world in a different way than we do if we just encounter it on our own. It is an entry point to understanding a different experience of the world. This aspect of storytelling – presenting a different perspective of the world – is important when it comes to connecting with each other. It gives us an opportunity to learn from another person’s experience and it can shape, strengthen or challenge our opinions and values. Through personal stories, we catch a glimpse of a view of the world that may be slightly or radically different from our own. When we see the world as they see it, or walk in their shoes, the experience can inspire empathy and is helpful in seeing people as individuals rather than as a homogenous group, like ‘patients’, ‘refugees’ or ‘the homeless’. These narratives act as an important communication tool that captures people’s attention, and provokes them to think differently about an issue and perhaps behave differently as well. How does this relate to myself and Minority Voices? Let me tell you my story and you tell me yours.
About the Speaker:
L. Sharvesh (He/They) is a MA student in Gender, Sexuality & Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University and the Co-Founder & Editor of Minority Voices Singapore, a social media platform that raises awareness about the ongoing racism and intersectional issues ethnic minority communities face in Singapore. His research interests lie in the intersections of sexual racism, inter-ethnic solidarity and emotional well-being. With a bachelor’s degree in guidance & counselling, and a foundational background in the performing arts, Sharvesh is motivated by the power of storytelling and how unearthing personal narratives of the lives and experiences of marginalised folk can be used to educate, motivate and inspire people to adopt anti-racist and anti-discriminatory attitudes to build a respectful community that acknowledges its differences, recognises the power in diversity and celebrates its uniqueness without pushing for assimilation or integration into a dominant way of being.