or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.
(Oriah Mountain Dreamer, 1999)
In the last 3 stanzas of Oriah’s The Invitation poem is the sentiment that we would like to convey in framing our thinking and discourse for our 6th International CREA Conference.
The poem is as much an invitation as it is a welcome, as much a challenge as it is a call to organize and work together. As the poet writes, it is also a way for us to communicate our priorities as the CREA family and for our upcoming conference. Inherent in our CREA mission, are several core assumptions about the work we do, aligned with the poem and the upcoming conference. We speak in our mission to:
- Intentionality and deliberateness. We are unapologetic in our efforts to build a community of practitioners AND scholars, thinkers and doers, those who like to play with dirt, and those who like to design.
- Stances, practices, and praxes of action, application, advocacy. We take seriously the issues of power and privilege that dominate our professions, fields, and disciplines, and we constantly push back against neocolonial, discriminatory rules, theories, and systems of oppression and inequity.
- Resourcefulness, responsiveness, and responsibility. Our CREA family recognizes that we have a responsibility to share, to counter, to interrogate, and if we do not, then we face the indictment of hypocrisy and the perceptions of traitor.
We are confident that our keynote speakers, along with the 180 proposals submitted for symposia, papers, and roundtables will once again create a space to nourish and challenge our collective spirit while preparing us for the next phase of our journey as a community. See you then and we request any responses you have now.
Stafford Hood, Director &
Rodney Hopson, Associate Director and Senior Fellow