Of Note: Speed’s Harm and Undoing

Submitted By:
Danah Screen, The Dalton School, New York, NY

Rest Is Resistance: A Manifesto by Tricia Hersey
Hachette Book Group, October 11, 2022

What if we confronted the glorification of grind culture and capitalism’s demand for constant productivity by reimagining rest as a form of resistance? Part-memoir, part-manifesto, Tricia Hersey’s Rest Is Resistance vibrantly challenges assumptions, poetically upholding practices like daydreaming and napping as means to reclaim agency. Blending personal revelations as a mover-turned-divinity-student and womanist theologian, Hersey advocates reclaiming time, creativity, and selfhood from exploitative forces valuing output over people. Centering her argument around the theft of regenerative spaces for imagination and healing, Hersey surfaces notions of rest and dreaming as wasteful idleness and repositions slowing down as a radical way to process ingrained trauma. Through insightful discussion questions for unpacking family legacies around overwork versus rest, Rest as Resistance enables critical dialogue: Can students perform unlimited labor and still retain spirit? What messages do we send by tying self-worth mainly to productivity? Can we embrace rest as a means of heightening our creativity, inventiveness, and willingness to support our community? For teachers and students, Hersey presents imaginative rest as power. Modeling slowing down fosters communities grounded in justice, sustainability, and being over doing. This imaginative shift grants schools permission to resist speed’s harms by honoring internal resilience.

Social-Emotional Learning
Student Wellness & Safety