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/ Institute of Philosophy, Citizenship and Youth

Je donne


PhiloQuests: the day of worry

9. Sharing of Stances

The transformations of threat


ObjectiveTo share your creative thoughts on threat by writing a conversation between threats who want to transform themselves!

Duration: 15 to 45 minutes


  • Sheets of paper
  • Pencils and eraser 
  • Coloured pencils and markers


Some things are threatening: They look mean, they scare us and they seem to want to hurt us. But is there another way to look at them? To find out, embark on this very special mission in which you will rethink the concept of threat through a conversation between different threatening things that want to change for the better!


  1. Create your characters. To complete this strange mission, you get to write a conversation between three things that are generally considered threatening but don't want to hurt people anymore, namely: a hurricane, a knife and a virus. First, imagine these things as characters, much like you did with the concept of worry in the Idea stretching activity. What do these threats look like? What kind of personalities do they have? Also ask yourself what they would prefer to do instead of being threatening: Does the hurricane long to become the whirlpool of water in the washing machine? Does the knife just want to be used to prepare the dishes of a great chef? Does the virus want nothing more than to help people by being part of disease treatments—or what's called virotherapy?

  2. Write the conversation. On a piece of paper, write down the conversation that takes place between the three characters. Remember: although they are usually seen as threatening, these three things don't want to hurt people anymore. What can the characters say to explain that they are not mean, even if they can sometimes be dangerous? How can they explain their new life project? What emotions do they express?

  3. Think about the conversation. Now think about these few questions: Can something or someone be threatening without being mean? Does understanding something or someone better make them less frightening? Is a threat just a matter of perspective? Why or why not? Write your ideas on the sheet.

  4. Share the conversation. Take a photo of the sheet, and send it with your first name and age to so we can share your position with others!


Bonus: Imagine that the three characters meet again a year later, each having started their new life. They are no longer threats, but now play a positive role in the world! Write down the conversation that they have during their reunion. Then think about the following questions: Is it possible to change who you are? Should everyone have the right to a second chance? Should we help people to become better? Why or why not?

Could a threat simple be a matter of perspective?

Can we be mean without meaning to?

This comic strip is reproduced with permission from the philosophy columns of our community partner Les Débrouillards magazine. It was produced in collaboration with our team at the Institute of Philosophy, Citizenship and Youth.


Tricks for tots: If you prefer, you can draw the meeting of the hurricane,  knife and  virus on a sheet of paper. Don't forget to imagine that they are living characters in this story! Instead of writing down their entire conversation, you can imagine it in your head: What are they saying to each other? Also ask yourself these questions: Do you think it's possible to hurt others without being mean? Is it possible to be mean without wanting to be mean? Why or why not? Can you stop being mean... or can you become mean?
Tips for teens: To take your thoughts a step further, choose a word that is sometimes used as an insult but that is not necessarily insulting. Can a word be threatening? Why or why not? If so, should the word be transformed to make it less threatening by banning some meanings and promoting others? Is the meaning of words fixed? Perhaps censorship can sometimes be acceptable… what do you think?

Share your creative reflections by sending them via email.
Include photos of your projects and notes of your thoughts, as well as your first name and your age!

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