On What it Takes to Heal (Livestream)
Public Programs

On What it Takes to Heal (Livestream)

A Conversation With Prentis Hemphill and W. Kamau Bell


  • Register to access the livestream and one week of ad-free replay access
  • Books are available to add to your order at check-out for pick-up from Marcus Books in Oakland, California or delivery within the United States
  • These tickets are for the livestream version of this event. In-Person tickets are sold out.

As we continue to navigate years of collective upheaval, are there ways for us to face the complexities of our time with joy, authenticity, and connection? To do so we must learn to heal ourselves, connect with each other, and embody our values. Prentis Hemphill, embodiment practitioner, therapist, and activist, shows us that we don't have to carry our emotional burdens alone. Prentis asks, "what would it do to movements, to our society and culture to have the principles of healing at the very center? And what does it do to have healing at the center of every structure, and everything we create?"

In Prentis’ work they argue that the principles of embodiment awareness—the recognition of our body’s sensations, habits, and the beliefs that inform them—are critical to lasting healing and change.

Join Prentis for a grounding conversation with comedian, author, and filmmaker W. Kamau Bell exploring what it takes to truly heal and how we can create a future in which healing is done in community. In the conversation Prentis shares ideas from their latest book, What it Takes to Heal, which draws on their experiences as a trauma survivor and a clinician, as well as lessons learned from their time as a social movement architect.

Prentis invites us to heal our bodies, minds, and souls, to develop the interpersonal skills necessary to bust down the doors of disconnection and take the necessary risks to reshape our world towards justice.

Prentis Hemphill color portrait. Prentis is a Black person with medium-length locs. Their hand is resting on heir chin and they are smiling as they are posed in front of a gray background. They are wearing a blue button-down, and one small hoop can be seen.

Prentis Hemphill is a writer, embodiment facilitator, political organizer, and therapist. They are the founder and director of the Embodiment Institute and the Black Embodiment Initiative, and the host of the acclaimed podcast Finding Our Way. Their work and writing have appeared in The New York Times, HuffPost, You Are Your Best Thing (edited by Tarana Burke and Brené Brown), and Holding Change (by adrienne maree brown).



W. Kamau Bell is a Black man seated on the stone steps of a building that we can only see the bottom of. He has one hand resting open on his knee and another bent at the elbow resting on the same knee and his hand resting on his chin and he softly smiles.

W. Kamau Bell is a comedian, author, and filmmaker. His CNN docu-series United Shades of America won five Emmy awards, and he was awarded a Peabody for his docu-series We Need To Talk About Cosby. He is most proud of his Emmy award-winning documentary short 1000% Me: Growing Up Mixed. Kamau is on the board of Donors Choose and Live Free and is one of the ACLU's Celebrity Ambassadors for Racial Justice. In 2023, he and his wife Melissa Hudson Bell co-founded Who Knows Best, an Oakland-based production company.



We are grateful to our Bookstore Partner

Marcus Books is the nation’s oldest Black-owned independent bookstore celebrating its 60th year. Marcus Books’ mission is to provide opportunities for Black folks and their allies to celebrate and learn about Black people everywhere. Learn more about Marcus Books.



If you need to request accessibility accommodations, please email publicprograms@ciis.edu at least one week prior to the event. For more information, explore our Accessibility web page.

Important Event Information

Access to the livestream event is limited to registered guests. Registered ticket holders will receive the link to watch the livestream, will have access to chat and Q&A, and will have an ad-free watching experience.

Recording Policy

Ticket holders will have access to an ad-free replay of the event for one week after the live event. A replay with ads will be released on our YouTube channel one week after the livestream. Portions of the audio will also be released on our podcast. Only registered ticket holders who choose to watch live can participate in the chat and Q&A.

Refunding Policy

All tickets and donations for this event are nonrefundable.

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