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May 16, 2014
LA GRANDE, Ore. (EOU) – Eastern Oregon University students and community members are invited to experience the “Tunnel of Oppression” May 27-28.
Participants in this interactive program are guided through a series of rooms where they encounter oppressive actions and reactions including racism, homophobia, poverty and oppression against women.
Some of the rooms are theatrical, with student actors portraying the oppressed. Others place participants directly in the shoes of individuals facing bigotry, hate and degradation.
A contrasting “Tunnel of Hope” waits at the conclusion, offering inspirational quotes and phrases, and a facilitated discussion with counselors encouraging participants to talk about the experience.
EOU senior Eric Martin learned about the “Tunnel of Oppression” concept last fall when he attended the Association of College Unions International Regional Conference in Boise. The program is inspired by the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles and similar programs at other universities throughout the U.S.
“I thought it was a great opportunity to bring something new to EOU and help showcase our Multicultural Center, as well as promote Eastern’s mission on diversity,” Martin said.
Martin is from Nampa, Idaho and transferred to EOU two years ago. He will complete his major in anthropology/sociology with a concentration in anthropology this spring.
“I hope that everyone takes away a better sense of self, given the opportunity to ‘see through the eyes’ of an oppressed group,” he added. “Some of us go through each day not really knowing how easy we have it sometimes, and this is a way to step into the world of someone who has to endure these hardships every day.”
The free activity is being held in the Student Leadership Zone in the Hoke Union Building, Room 204. Groups of eight to 10 people will walk through the rooms beginning at 1 p.m. and then every half-hour until 5:30 p.m. both days of the program.
Register online at OrgSync. Participants must be 18 or older due to mature content.
For more information call 541-962-3741 or e-mail Bennie Moses, Multicultural Center director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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