Desire and Design: Construct Your Humanism

Dates & Location TBA

The School for Designing a Society and Patch Adams MD invite you to construct your humanism!

School for Designing a Society and Patch Adams MD invite you to a ten day exploration of Desire and Design: Construct your Humanism!

The class will be a webinar. We trade the pleasures of physical proximity with this new opportunity to invite participants in far away lands to attend, who previously weren’t able to (money costs, travel, visas, etc).Welcome!

What’s the webinar about? –‘Before’ meets ‘Now’!

NOW: Many people think the experiences of now—of the pandemic and quarantine— have been an unprecedented disaster (Do you?)

BEFORE: But,  Before pandemic, health care was already under stress; race- gender- class- and other disparities were already acute; climate change was already showing some of its feared consequences; de-humanization was the norm; innovative solutions were dismissed with “oh, that will never happen! Another world is NOT’ possible!”.

Guess what: It IS possible.  We’ve got proof—we’ve just lived it. We’ve just lived an exploration of our humanism as a counter to the de-humanization of our society.


Which ‘impossibilities’, desires and designs do we want to make ‘possible’?

How can we counteract the social structures—legal, non-legal, formal informal –that treat living systems (human and non-human) as something other than living systems? We’ll take the title as an invitation” Construct your humanism”! Each participant will be assisted to create designs and strategies to support, protect, and embody your humanism—an  ‘action plan’.

*The program is open to all members of the caring fields—health care, education, governance, parenting, social service, social justice, environmental protection, public arts—and anyone who is interested.


Online Webinar

In a first of its kind online webinar style conference, Gesundheit is very excited to offer this year’s Desire and Design: Construct Your Humanism Summer Program in collaboration with the School for Designing a Society, from the comfort of your own home! The intensive will consist of daily presentations, small group discussions, dinner dates, and strict and loose tamperings with the edges of social distancing. Though we are geographically dispersed lets remain intensively connected, we hope you’ll join us!


How Can we Clown if we’re only together digitally?

People have asked: but how can we learn to clown, learn play, if we’re only together digitally? Will the 10 days be primarily talking and very little doing​?

Answer: We intend to do both talking and doing, by way of ‘strict-and-loose’ thinking. . ‘Strict-and-loose’ is a way of applying two different sensibilities to constrain one activity: addressing aspects of an activity ‘strictly’, and other aspects ‘loosely’. Both sensibilities need each other—neither is an imposition but a help.

Clowning in a pandemic/quarantined universe requires both ‘strict-and-loose’ thinking. For health reasons, we’re constrained (‘strict’):

  1. stand 6 feet apart (physical distancing)
  2. wear a face mask and gloves
  3. sanitize objects we’re using in common

So, thank you, ‘strict’ thinking. Step one.

Step two: What about ‘loose’ (as in, ‘loosening-up”)? Looking at clowning through the ‘loose’ lens, while maintaining the ‘strict’ constraints—wow, there’s all sorts of things we can do.

For example:
At home, as a way of preparing for public clowning:
1. practice facial expressions while half of your face is covered with a mask.
2. Ask your shelter-in-place cohorts to look at you, and guess what facial expression you’re trying to portray.
3. Add your gloved hands as an additional ‘message’ to your facial expressions. Watch yourself in a mirror.
4. Add hats to your head. Depending on how many hats you have, wear a hat for 10 seconds becoming the persona of that hat, take it off wear a different hat, become the persona of that hat, etc.



Tuitions costs ($400) will cover online tuition for the Ten days (only weekdays). This is an online webinar style conference. An online meeting link will be provided to join.


Who should apply?

We welcome participants from the variety of caring fields, in whatever role the participant  plays (for example, in education, we welcome the participation of teachers, students, family).  We are especially eager to create a multi-generational community, so teenagers from age 17 on and are invited to apply, as well as older adults.



How to Apply?

Registration consists of 2 parts.

Sign up Soon! Registration is almost FULL. 5 Spaces Remain.

  1. Application form: Please take a moment to fill out the application form. We will then contact you to arrange a phone interview. After the phone call, you will hear back from us concerning your acceptance in the program. I’m ready to apply.
  2. Payment: Upon your acceptance, we ask that you pay either the entire fee or non-refundable deposit online via secure PayPal account or with a check payable to School for Designing a Society. I’m ready to pay.

Have Questions? Need some Help? For more information contact Susan ⇒

Patch Adams MD & Gesundheit Institute, P.O. Box 307, Urbana, IL 61803

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