Creating Connections in the Caribbean: Preparation and Process of Multilingual and Multinational Intergroup Dialogue
Intergroup dialogue is being touted by many as a tool to promote perspective taking and the reduction of social biases (e.g., race, gender, religion, etc.) and intergroup conflict (Zúñiga, Nagda, & Sevig, 2002). It is described as a facilitated group experience in which participants can explore challenging social issues and lived experiences in a safe and structured environment (Dessel & Rogge, 2008). Scholars assert that intergroup dialogue in community settings can be as simple as a small study circle and as complex as an international cross-cultural dialogue (Dessel, Rogge, & Garlington, 2006). Yet, despite frequent reference to the value of intergroup dialogue in the midst of increasing globalization, there is a dearth of information on facilitating intergroup dialogue in both a multinational and multilingual context. The present paper synthesizes existing literature on intergroup dialogue processes and elucidates these concepts using a multinational and multilingual intergroup dialogue from a student workshop at a national conference as a case example. Through this discussion of events, the present paper contributes to our understanding of how to create connections amidst diversity in nationality and language. Considerations for each stage of intergroup dialogue and directions for future research are offered.