About two weeks ago, Maker Jawn gave a presentation in collaboration with Net Squared, which is a global network that gathers together nonprofits and activists, tech leaders and funders, and everyone who’s interested in using technology for social change.
We decided to focus on storytelling and technology while also acknowledging the role storytelling plays in legitimizing our program’s narrative. Many young Makers have taken their storytelling prowess forward by constructing roles for themselves as artists in the community, organizing fundraisers or simply by engaging on a daily basis with the activities we have planned. Many kids have channelled their otherwise destructive energy into creativity through Maker Jawn.
Needless to say, storytelling is an integral part of our program.
After a short presentation to contextualize the nature of Maker Jawn, we moved forward into a two part exercise, where we split into 3 groups and invented a new word together to describe an experience.
For example, the word sonder as defined by The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows, means:
“The realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own—populated with their own ambitions, friends, routines, worries and inherited craziness—an epic story that continues invisibly around you like an anthill sprawling deep underground, with elaborate passageways to thousands of other lives that you’ll never know existed, in which you might appear only once, as an extra sipping coffee in the background, as a blur of traffic passing on the highway, as a lighted window at dusk.”
This is not just a word. It’s a word that describes an otherwise ineffable experience, and once we have a word to name that experience, we are able to cleanly discuss it as a concept. It tells a story.
The second part of this exercise was to create an animation with iStopMotion, in order to illustrate the newly created word to other members of the workshop.
We spent about 45 minutes on our animations, which can be viewed below along with the definitions of the words we invented.
Unmythisize: Discovering that the supernatural is real (see demythian: a person who has been unmythisized)
Phantonesia: The nagging feeling that you’ve forgotten something or have forgotten to do something.
Paucity: The presence of something only in small or insufficient quantities or amounts; scarcity. (This is a word that actually exists already, but it was a new word to me!)