During the summer, the Anne Frank House organized a series of summer lectures for professionals on how to deal with discrimination. Carolien was invited to give a lecture about the role of emotions and empathy for others on an individual level (in friendships), but also regarding empathy on a more abstract level, also known as “societal concern”.
Which children and adolescents are willing to donate their time or their money for an organization like War Child or Greenpeace? In the discussion that followed, the professionals (police officers, youth workers, high school teachers) were especially triggered by the positive value of anger. Instead of trying to get rid of it, anger is an emotion that activates people to make a change. The question is how to guide that energy in a way that fits with societal norms and values.