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Handling the collective trauma of police violence, mass shootings and a pandemic

April 25, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 17.2%. 1 min read.

A reckoning with the deaths resulting from institutionalized racism, a resurgence of almost-daily gun violence and 3.1 million pandemic deaths worldwide, there has been trauma piled upon trauma upon trauma.

Over the course of her 40-year career, Silver has studied the effects of trauma on individuals and on society as a collective whole.

The traumas of the past year -- which are ongoing -- have created a once-in-a-generation situation Silver refers to as "cascading collective traumas," that continue to threaten our mental health in tragic ways.

CNN: We have had one collective trauma on top of another over the past year.

Roxane Cohen Silver: I call them "cascading" collective traumas.

In the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombing, some colleagues and I looked at how people in the Northeast had coped with the tragedy in light of other events, such as Hurricane Sandy and the 9/11 terror attacks and the Sandy Hook shooting.

Silver: What is true about collective trauma is that many people experience them simultaneously.

Either way, when it comes to gun violence, we're talking about repeated collective trauma.

I think people have been stepping away from the news as the news is all bad, all the time.

I think people's way of coping with that is to step away from the news.

CNN: How can people cope with cascading collective trauma?

I think it's important people monitor how much time they're spending engaged in bad news and media reports of tragedy.

by summa-bot

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