HEALING THE WOUNDS OF HISTORY

(Formerly called Acts of Reconciliation)

This project produces public events and seminars for people identified with polarized groups, and promotes intercultural communication, mutual understanding, and conflict resolution through the expressive arts.

Healing the Wounds of History is a process in which experiential techniques are used to work with a group of participants who share a common legacy of historical trauma. The process was developed by Armand Volkas, MFT, a psychotherapist and drama therapist from Berkeley, California. Volkas is the son of Auschwitz survivors and resistance fighters from World War II. He was moved by his personal struggle with this legacy of historical trauma to address the issues that arose from it: identity, victimization and perpetration, meaning and grief. Healing the Wounds of History helps participants work through the burden of such legacies by transforming their pain into constructive action. Armand Volkas’s work has received international recognition for bringing groups in conflict together: Germans and Jews; Palestinians and Israelis; Japanese, Chinese and Koreans; African-Americans and European-Americans, to name a few.

Healing the Wounds of History is based on the premise that there can be no political solutions to intercultural conflict until we understand and take into consideration the needs, emotions and unconscious drives of the human being. The Healing the Wounds of History Project, which takes a psychological approach to conflict, provides a map to help both groups traverse the emotional terrain to reconciliation. We invite groups in conflict, who are willing to be emotional pioneers for their cultures, to participate in this groundbreaking project:

  • Breaking the taboo against "enemies" speaking to each other.
  • Humanizing each other through sharing our personal stories.
  • Taking steps towards healing personal and collective wounds using creative and experiential methods.
  • Transforming historical trauma into constructive action and service.

Join us in an effort to work through the layers of the unresolved feelings we carry about each other. Participate in a workshop where we explore what it means to be an emotional pioneer who helps pave the way for others to follow.

For more information contact Armand Volkas at

(510) 595-5500, Ext 11 or email him at info@livingartscenter.org


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