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OASIS Writing Skills

Video Transcripts:
Writing for Social Change: With Dr. Laurel Walsh

Transcripts for Writing Center videos

Writing for Social Change: With Dr. Laurel Walsh

Visual: Video opens to the opening title with the video series title, Faculty Voices: Walden Talks Writing, then the title, “How have you experienced the connection between writing and social change? with Dr. Laurel Walsh.”


Visual: The screen changes to show each speaker talking to the camera in their home offices. Each person’s name and college is listed as they speak.


Dr. Laurel Walsh, College of Education and Leadership: So positive social change is a wonderful concept, and it's a beautiful phrase, and it's really empty if we can't use our thoughts, reflections, and insights, and truths in a way to impact others. So I would kind of argue that that's the—it’s the legs of positive social change, is composition. That's how it gets out, it's how it gets elsewhere, it's how it infiltrates other people. And you look at repression and regimes where they're trying to prevent people from really participating, how do they do it? They keep people from learning how to read and how to write and that base level oppression of our ability to take our concepts and our individual feelings and put them down on the page and make them portable so that other people can be impacted by them—that’s a fundamental human right that's attached to social change in such a knitted way that I don't think that they're—I don't think one's possible without the other. So for me, writing is how social change occurs in this world, writing is the way that we connect with others, writing is how the things that matter to us start to matter to other people. Writing is what will be left of us after our children are trying to put the pieces together to understand who we were and what mattered to us. It'll be our writing that is the reflection of these things.

So you know, there's the adage, be careful who you pretend to be, you know Kurt Vonnegut's idea. Well, be very careful about the way that you write your ideas and be very mindful that writing inspires action. Words inspire people to change direction, to do things differently. And the only way we're going to change the world is when we write about the things that matter to us and they make, make other people care about them just as much as we do. And when you write well, it's a reflection of thinking well, and when you write and think well, those ideas can change the world.


Visual: The video ends with the closing title with the video series title, Faculty Voices: Walden Talks Writing and the Writing Center’s e-mail address: