Producer, Kristin Hahn, Chair of the Kelley Poll, and Professor Kelley discuss peace in stories
Hollywood film producer Kristin Hahn and Kelley School of Business professor Timothy Fort spoke about peace illustrated through storytelling Tuesday night at the Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies.
Hahn is also the 2022 Kelley Poling Professor of Business and Government. She is well known for her current position as executive producer of the Apple TV show “The Morning Show”, which stars Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon. Fort, a professor of business ethics, said he has worked on peace and business issues for more than 20 years.
They showed clips from genres such as historical dramas and non-fiction films. The clips ranged from “Forrest Gump” to a baboon documentary. The most recent came from social media and broadcast news. But they all had one thing in common: people come together and like each other despite the differences.
“More than ever, our culture, our country is very divided ideologically,” Hahn said in an interview with IDS. “It’s something we all hopefully care about and care about because if we don’t start making openings to find common ground, we’re going to keep drifting further and further apart. .”
The event was born out of the idea of building bridges between different cultures and beliefs through shared experiences, Hahn said. Often the individuals in the clips used gestures such as food, humor, or music to peacefully interact with people different from them.
In a clip from “Forrest Gump,” Bubba told Forrest about his family’s history with shrimp. In another clip, Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia became good friends through humor and their shared love of opera despite viewing the law from different angles.
Hahn said she hopes audiences take away ideas on how to build bridges with people in their own lives that they’re in conflict with.
“Some of these gestures aren’t epic in nature,” Hahn said of the featured clips. “It’s, in a sense, small gestures that make a big difference.”
Fort said small gestures and shared experiences are applicable among students. In one clip, a college softball player yearned to hit a home run. But when she finally did, she tore her ACL and couldn’t run the bases until the opposing team’s players carried her around the diamond.
“37 seconds,” Fort said of the student’s gesture. “37 seconds, from a student exactly your age.”
Fort said that by finding common ground, we can have much more constructive conversations.
“This is a really critical step that we need to take,” Fort said. “It’s true in the classroom. This is true for fraternities and sororities. It’s true in your family. It’s true on every level, and that’s what I want people to come away with.
Jakob Hebebrand, a young economics student in one of Fort’s classes, said Fort often uses examples like these clips.
“To talk about no matter how different people might appear on the surface or something, there are things that bind humans together,” Hebebrand said.