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Can story telling provide a healing touch to Diversity?

March 20, 2015

“Something Else for J.K. Rowling to Feel Good About”

Quoting the HBR, “A study in two nations of students of various ages demonstrates that reading or listening to the Harry Potter novels and identifying with the main character increase tolerance of stigmatized groups, says a team led by Loris Vezzali of the University of Modena in Italy. For example, Italian elementary school children who listened to passages from the books over six weeks showed improved attitudes toward immigrants. In the books, which have sold more than 450 million copies worldwide, the hero is angered by discrimination, such as when Hermione Granger, who isn’t a pure-blood witch, is insulted as a “filthy little Mudblood.”

Possible lessons learnt:

  • Critical role of appropriate role models during impressionable age
  • Embedding story telling as a part of influencing diverse societies to be tolerant towards each other
  • Influential leaders to consciously build on this mission

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