Social Groups, Power and Privilege
Materials: Large pieces of paper, felt-tips
Step 1. In plenary put together a wall newspaper on the topic of “Which social groups have more power in our societies?”
Step 2. Write down the name of one group that has more power and privilege (from the wall newspaper or you can add others) on each large piece of paper, for example: white people, members of an ethnic majority, men, people without disabilities, heterosexuals, etc. Have four to six such groups. Ask participants to choose one of these groups (that they don’t actually belong to).
Discussion in these groups: “Why did you choose this group? What kinds of privileges does this group enjoy in society?” An additional task is to list these privileges on the paper with the name of their group.
Step 3. Make a small exhibition so that everyone can walk around the room and see what has been written down. Using a felt-tip of a different colour to that used on the paper, they can add privileges that have not been listed but which they consider important.
Suggested questions for evaluating the exercise:
- What did you notice?
- Did you see a privilege that you enjoy?
- What did you learn about privilege?
- What is the connection between privilege and power?