The Person to Whom Things Happen

By Naomi Zacharias

Yesterday I read a powerful article recently published by Parul Sehgal. The Senior Editor of the New York Times Book Review reaches into deep and complex waters and thoughtfully engages with a real question:

as our language travels from victim to survivor, have we unknowingly swung the pendulum so far that we place a painful weight on the one violated? Does it add space to breathe, or instead a layer of complication as he or she engages in the difficult work of determining how to acknowledge this pain–an abuse that fiercely shattered the ability to view life a certain way, yet one he or she does not want to define both the past and the future?

This is well worth the read for any one who has been violated and wounded–the one intimately familiar with what it means to be victimized; the one or another who carries the strength and weight of survivorship, and for the individual and community that seeks to bear witness and support healing for a soul and story.

Read “The Forced Heroism of the ‘Survivor'” on the New York Times here.

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