And so, it seems to me, storytelling can be an act of survival.

The practice of storytelling begins in the day-to-day minutiae of one’s own life. Because we are meaning-making machines, we translate our experiences into potent narratives. We tell stories to make sense of our experiences. Through this act of translation, we develop opinions and assumptions about how things are. The human impulse to tell one’s own story is one of the basic human rights and freedoms in democratic societies. Speaking effectively, and communicatively, whether onstage, in poetry, in a book or in conversation, can free one from the prison of the past. Speaking a story can be an act of letting in light.

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