SPEAKING
TOPIC:
Black Lotus: A Woman's Search for Racial Identity
TOPIC:
Enough is Enough: Using Your Voice to Speak Out Against Domestic Violence 
TOPIC:
Redefining HERstory: Challenging Myths About Sexual Assault

BLACK LOTUS: A WOMAN'S SEARCH FOR RACIAL IDENTITY

 

Abrams contextualizes her unique life experience in her memoir and speaking program of the same name, “Black Lotus: A Woman's Search for Racial Identity”.  In this searingly honest and dynamic presentation, she uses her own story to engage participants in a dialogue about race, identity and self acceptance. With a format that encourages critical discussion, Abrams will explore why some choose to embrace an “either/or” racial identity in a time of increased acknowledgement of mixed-race people. She will challenge participants to think about how one owns their identity in a way that is affirming and empowering in a world that often views all forms of identity through a binary lens.  As a woman who could have chosen to deny her racial heritage, Abrams shares why she chose to embrace her Black identity and today works to challenge the media to create & share more diverse representations of Black womanhood.

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH: USING YOUR VOICE TO SPEAK OUT AGAINST

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE:

 

In this presentation, Abrams combines her personal narrative as a survivor of domestic violence with an overview of the historical background of the anti-domestic violence movement to facilitate an interactive discussion on this global women's health issue. Abrams candidly shares her experience as a survivor and long-time activist to encourage participants to rethink their own conceptions of domestic violence and guide a conversation on how society can challenge the entrenched belief systems around gender and intimate partner violence .

Redefining HERstory: Challenging Myths About Sexual Assault 

“Why did they wait so long to speak out?”

“Why would they say something now?”

“They were never convicted of a crime…how can they be a rapist?”

 

Rape culture plays a large role in how victims and perpetrators are treated by the judicial system, contributing to the lack of belief in victims stories and sympathy for the accused. Blaming techniques, which tend to re-victimize survivors, involve fixation on what victims were wearing, their prior sexual histories, substance use, and survivors’ relationship with their perpetrator(s). 

 

In this searingly open presentation, Abrams explores how rape myths within rape culture place blame for assaults on victims instead of perpetrators by sharing her personal experience as a survivor of sexual assault. She explores the realities that survivors must contend with when deciding whether to report while detailing the various challenges they face whether or not they choose to come forward. This powerful presentation will challenge participants to think about the complexity of sexual assault in an effort to create a more sympathetic environment for victims of sexual violence.  

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