Following the Rainbow trail : the reproduction of an alternative intentional community




Woodall, John David

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The purpose of this research project was to investigate how the Rainbow Family of Living Light has, for the past thirty years, continued to reproduce itself. In doing so, I provide an explanation for why one cohort of young adults continue to actively participate at Gatherings. The data were collected through on-site observations, participation in informal focus groups and eight in-depth interviews with young adults at the National Gathering in Colorado (July 2006) and the British Columbia Regional Island Gathering (August 2006). I argue that the research data suggests that for the young adults interviewed, active participation at a Gathering provides an opportunity to participate in the construction of a community, as well as validating their individual identity. I further argue that the relationship between the individual's identity and the collective identity of the Family is far more symbiotic than is usually acknowledged within the literature.



Rainbow Family of Living Light, utopias, Colorado, British Columbia, 21st century, history