Unity in Diversity

Poetry by Carol A. Hand (Ojibwe-Euro Scholar-Elder-Retired Professor)

Métis, Melungeon, Mulatto
Mixes of many nations
Often shamed and assigned
To societies’ lowest stations

Sometimes produced by conquest
Other times by choice
Signifying shared humanity
Giving diversity – a unified voice

It’s time to stand together
Clothed with wisdom and pride
Leading the way to understanding
Overcoming distinctions that divide

 

Descendants of the rainbow
No matter the circumstances of birth
Regardless of the names assigned
All beautiful humans of immeasurable worth

 

Carol is the co-editor of the MIX. 

carol handI’m Carol Hand, an enrolled member of the Sokaogon Ojibwe Community, one of the 6 bands of Ojibwe people located in what is now the state of Wisconsin.  During my early childhood, I spent my school years in New Jersey where I was born, and my summers with relatives on the Lac du Flambeau Ojibwe reservation in Wisconsin.  My bi-cultural heritage has had a profound influence on my life.  My educational background includes a BA, MSSW, and Ph.D., all from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  During my career, I served as social work faculty for universities in Wisconsin, Montana, and Illinois where my primary emphasis included organizational change, community development, and policy analysis and advocacy.  Before joining academia, I worked as the aging network supervisor for a state department of health and social services and as deputy director of health and human services for an inter-tribal council.  I have also worked in a variety of settings as a program developer, public speaker, grant-writer, program evaluator, and researcher.  My passion remains working from a liberatory praxis perspective with individuals and communities that have experienced oppression to transform oppressive social structures through consciousness-raising and non-violent community-directed action.  In 2011, I retired and taught part-time for a private college satellite program located at a tribal and community college for several years before I decided to focus on writing.  In my free time, I enjoy reading, gardening, listening to stories from diverse cultural backgrounds, and spending time with my family and grandchildren.  I have recently learned how much I love reading blogs that teach me about diverse topics from so many different perspectives, and I try to contribute in small ways to the voices of resistance from the margins.

 

Artwork: Embroidery by Carol Hand

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