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The Four Pivots: Reimagining Justice, Reimagining Ourselves--Shawn A. Ginwright, Ph.D. in conversation with Dr. Farima Pour-Khorshid

Event date: 
Thursday, February 24, 2022 - 7:30pm to 8:30pm

This event takes place on crowdcast, Charis' virtual event platform. Register here.

Charis welcomes Shawn A. Ginwright, Ph.D. in conversation with Dr. Farima Pour-Khorshid for a discussion of The Four Pivots: Reimagining Justice, Reimagining Ourselves. For readers of Emergent Strategy and Dare to Lead, an activist's roadmap to long-term social justice impact through four simple shifts. This event is co-hosted by the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History.

We need a fundamental shift in our values--a pivot in how we think, act, work, and connect. Despite what we’ve been told, the most critical mainspring of social change isn’t coalition building or problem analysis. It’s healing: deep, whole, and systemic, inside and out.

Here, Shawn Ginwright, Ph.D., breaks down the common myths of social movements--a set of deeply ingrained beliefs that actually hold us back from healing and achieving sustainable systemic change. He shows us why these frames don’t work, proposing instead four revolutionary pivots for better activism and collective leadership:

Awareness: from lens to mirror
Connection: from transactional to transformative relationships
Vision: from problem-fixing to possibility-creating
Presence: from hustle to flow

Supplemented with reflections, prompts, cutting-edge research, and the author’s own insights and lived experience as an African American social scientist, professor, and movement builder, The Four Pivots helps us uncover our
obstruction spots. It shows us how to discover new lenses and boldly assert our need for connection, transformation, trust, wholeness, and healing. It gives us permission to create a better future--to acknowledge that a broken system has been predefining our dreams and limiting what we allow ourselves to imagine, but that it doesn’t have to be that way at all. Are you ready to pivot? 

Shawn Ginwright, Ph.D. is one of the nation’s leading innovators, provocateurs, and thought leaders on African American youth, youth activism, and youth development. He is Professor of Education in the Africana Studies Department and a Senior Research Associate at San Francisco State University. His research examines the ways in which youth in urban communities navigate through the constraints of poverty and struggle to create equality and justice in their schools and communities.

Dr. Ginwright is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Flourish Agenda, Inc., a national nonprofit consulting firm, whose mission is to design strategies that unlock the power of healing and engage youth of color and adult allies in transforming their schools and communities. He is the author of the new book “The Four Pivots: Reimagining Justice, Reimagining Ourselves.” His other books include “Hope and Healing in Urban Education: How Activists and Teachers are Reclaiming Matters of the Heart,” “Black Youth Rising, Activism and Radical Healing in Urban America,” “Black in School- Afrocentric Reform, Black Youth and the Promise of Hip-Hop Culture,” and co-editor of “Beyond Resistance!: Youth Resistance and Community Change: New Democratic Possibilities for Practice and Policy for America's Youth.”

Dr. Ginwright lives in Oakland, CA with his lovely wife and is currently an empty-nester—both children are in college.

Dr. Farima Pour-Khorshid (she/her/hers) is a Bay Area educator, organizer, and scholar. After teaching at the elementary grade levels in her community for over a decade, she spent the latter half of her teaching career also supporting educators locally, nationally, and internationally through her roles as a university professor, teacher supervisor, educational consultant, and community organizer. She is now a professor and teacher supervisor at the University of San Francisco in California. Much of her work is rooted in grassroots organizing with the Teachers 4 Social Justice, the Abolitionist Teaching Network, and the Education for Liberation Network, as well as her healing-centered facilitation and programming with Flourish Agenda. She is committed to centering abolitionist teaching, ethnic studies, and healing-centered engagement within and outside of the field of education. As such, she is one of the editors, authors, and organizers that collaborated on the recently released book, "Lessons in Liberation: An Abolitionist Toolkit for K-12 Educators."

This event is free and open to all people, especially to those who have no income or low income right now, but we encourage and appreciate a solidarity donation in support of the work of Charis Circle, our programming non-profit. Charis Circle's mission is to foster sustainable feminist communities, work for social justice, and encourage the expression of diverse and marginalized voices.

We will be archiving this event and adding closed captioning as soon as possible after airing so that it will be accessible to deaf and HOH people. If you have other accessibility needs or if you are someone who has skills in making digital events more accessible please don't hesitate to reach out to We are actively learning the best practices for this technology and we welcome your feedback as we begin this new way of connecting across distances.

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Event address: 
Decatur, GA 30030
The Four Pivots: Reimagining Justice, Reimagining Ourselves Cover Image
ISBN: 9781623175429
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: North Atlantic Books - January 25th, 2022

“Reading this courageous book feels like the beginning of a social and personal awakening...I can’t stop thinking about it.”—Brené Brown, PhD, author of Atlas of the Heart

Lessons in Liberation: An Abolitionist Toolkit for Educators Cover Image
By Collective the Education for Liberation, Bettina L. Love (Contribution by), Mariame Kaba (Contribution by)
ISBN: 9781849354363
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: AK Press - September 28th, 2021

A political vision for a future ripe with alternatives to imprisonment and punishment.

Black Youth Rising: Activism and Radical Healing in Urban America Cover Image
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780807750216
Published: Teachers College Press - November 27th, 2009

Black Youth Rising is a book that restores hope and possibility to the lives of urban black youth. In this pathbreaking account, author Shawn Ginwright details the powerful positive impact that community-based organizations can have in rebuilding the lives of urban black youth, through a process he calls radical healing.

Hope and Healing in Urban Education: How Urban Activists and Teachers Are Reclaiming Matters of the Heart Cover Image
ISBN: 9781138797574
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Routledge - August 13th, 2015

Hope and Healing in Urban Education proposes a new movement of healing justice to repair the damage done by the erosion of hope resulting from structural violence in urban communities.

The failure of current policy to address important quality of life issues for urban youth remains a substantial barrier to civic participation, educational equity, and healthy adulthood. This volume brings together the work of leading urban youth scholars to highlight the detrimental impact of zero tolerance policies on young people's educational experience and well being.

Event Summary: 
For readers of Emergent Strategy and Dare to Lead, an activist's roadmap to long-term social justice impact through four simple shifts.