We the People
As an English As A Second Language teacher I have had the privilege of getting to know many different families from all over the world that have chosen to make the United States their home for a variety of reasons. We are a nation of immigrants, and I believe this diversity is one of our greatest strengths.
We the people, the opening words to The Constitution, are symbolic of the power of our collective voice as Americans. By presenting these famous words in some of the many beautiful languages that make us collectively "the people", I hope to honor and acknowledge a portion of the voices that make up the American experience.
In anticipation of the 2020 Presidential Debate held on Belmont University's campus, creators from across the United States of America crafted their own Unity Flag in order to promote empathy for bipartisanship.
The overarching idea of the Unity Flag Project is to build “purple empathy” through the visual arts...
The formation of purple is an optical blending of blue and red coming together to engage in civil bipartisan discourse through the visual arts.
Purple empathy is the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another’s political views, political experiences, political opinions, political understandings, political intentions, and political decisions.
By providing a safe space for bipartisan discourse, the red and blue students gained purple empathy by sharing, listening, and hearing one another. In order to fully validate these experiences, other educators and I must continue to reflexively attempt such processes in order to create spaces for purple empathy to grow stronger and become far reaching.
We contacted creators from all over the United States...
I am working a national project called Unity Flags, and my hope is you will represent your state.
The Unity Flags are in anticipation for the final presidential debate Belmont is 'hosting' in the Fall. I would send you a care package with all the materials (canvas, paint & brushes) to create an American flag... in your own way, and you are welcome to use other colors and/or materials. You could do it with other artists, family, friends, students or alone (however you are COVID19 comfortable). You could get creative with the design or paint it to look exactly like old glory. It can also have a 'state' spin on it, but that is not required. I've attached example pics for inspiration.
Here are some example Unity Flags for inspiration. Thank you for joining this project.
Please contact me with any questions.
Meaghan Brady Nelson, PhD
Assistant Professor, Program Director of Fine Arts
Watkins College of Art | Belmont University | Nashville TN