Last month, our community of social justice leaders came together to dream and strategize about arts and culture. Two feminist activists came together to lead that conversation. Spring Associate and storyteller Purity Kagwiria teamed up with Zimbabwean artist Rudo Chigudu for an immersive live chat in April 2022 edition of our Leap of Leadership meetup.

“Arts and culture [are really about] providing hope and inspiration in a world that doesn’t always feel like it’s holding us gently,” Rudo reminds us.“We’re always telling stories. Even when we’re silent, there’s a story we are telling … So how do we become intentional about the stories we do tell?”

Listen to the 25-minute audio recording of the conversation’s highlights and read on for some key strategies you can experiment with to harness the power of storytelling in your work ... and to make sure culture is at the heart of how you make change.

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Arts, Culture and Movement Organizing

Our culture is a manifestation of what we’ve heard or seen. Art shows us what we’ve we’ve been taught whether consciously or subconsciously. Can you think beyond what you’ve seen or heard? Which stories are we retelling? What narratives do we need to break free from, personally or collectively? Since we know that deeply ingrained narratives are more powerful than simply telling people what to do, how do we put more stories of what want out into the world to make system change? Join Rudo and Purity for an in-depth conversation about storytelling and do some thinking about how to bring it into your movement-building work.

Rudo is a Zimbabwean feminist and artist-activist. She has long anchored her work in the arts, harnessing it as a tool for advocacy, self-expression and public awareness. Rudo is a recipient of human rights defender awards in 2011 and 2013 awarded by Crisis Coalition in Zimbabwe and Zimrights. Get a taste of her work here.


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