Look in the mirror and describe yourself, thinking about the categories of diversity listed in the table below. Compare yourself to the image in the category and decide if you are similar or different from the person or idea represented in that image.
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This exercise helps us see that there are all different kinds of diversity in the world and that people are diverse in different ways. There are some things we have in common with one group of people and not another; there are some things that make us different from one group of people and not another.
You may have found it difficult to answer the question: “Is this person like me or different?” The point of this question is that we don’t ever know enough about another person just by looking at them to recognize the points of similarity and difference between them and ourselves. For example, we might be heterosexual, but also married like the couple in picture 8. We might not be Chinese, but we might have been married in a wedding dress or suit that looks just much the one in picture 3. We might not have Down’s syndrome, but we might have a job and an income that allows us to dress well for work, as does the young man in picture 11.
Understanding diversity includes an awareness of how physical and visible differences affect people’s lives, but it also involves an appreciation that similarities and differences are more than skin deep.