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Home » How Do I Deal With a Bully, Without Becoming a Thug? by Scilla Elworthy at TEDxExeter (Transcript)

How Do I Deal With a Bully, Without Becoming a Thug? by Scilla Elworthy at TEDxExeter (Transcript)

Scilla Elworthy

Here is the full transcript of peace activist Scilla Elworthy’s TEDx Talk: How Do I Deal With a Bully, Without Becoming a Thug? at TEDxExeter conference.

TRANSCRIPT: 

I’m so delighted to be able to see you. In half a century of trying to help prevent wars, there’s one question that never leaves me: how do we deal with extreme violence without using force in return?

When you’re faced with brutality, whether it’s a child facing a bully in the playground, or domestic violence, or on the streets of Syria today facing tanks and shrapnel, what’s the most effective thing to do? Fight back? Give in? Use more force? This question, “How do I deal with a bully without becoming a thug in return?”, has been with me ever since I was a child.

I remember I was about thirteen, glued to a grainy, black and white television in my parents’ living room, as soviet tanks rolled into Budapest. And kids not much older than me were throwing themselves at the tanks and getting mown down. And I rushed upstairs and started packing my suitcase, and my mother came up and said, “What on earth are you doing?”

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