Decolonization Workshop

The Tamejavi fellows participated in a Decolonization workshop led by Dr. Gaspar Rivera Salgado this past August. During the workshop fellows and members of their learning groups had the opportunity to engage in dialogue about different topics among them addressing the issues of cultural diversity, gender and identity.

Photos by Eduardo Stanley.


4 thoughts on “Decolonization Workshop

  1. During the Decolonization workshop I learned about a lot of things that were very surprising and interesting such as understanding the difference between “Colonization and Oppression/ Decolonization and Liberation.” I came to learn about the Dominant Ideology, which consists of the beliefs, values, and morals of the majority of people in a society. Dr. Gaspar Rivera, for instance used the Mexican community as an example to exemplify what the dominant ideology is in which I was very much shocked when he said that 62 languages were spoken in Mexico, yet not all or rather none of those languages are accepted as part of the “Mexican Culture” since they aren’t a Spanish language. I also learned that 65% of Hispanic/ Latinos choose “White Race” when trying to identify with their heritage. Learning about this made me understand why in many communities people aren’t accepted because they speak another language, they dress differently,etc. so right away they are assumed to be different from society. This type of internalized oppression must be stop by us community leaders and organizers, who aren’t afraid to speak and expose our communities and let everyone know that just because we eat different food, talk differently, etc. doesn’t mean we aren’t part of that society we belong too. Other things I learned about that I never really though about was the idea of asses of belonging and sense of being in my community is so similar to that of other communities.
    If we had the opportunity to have a second part of the decolonization training something I would like to have a further discussion on would be on why the roles of women in communities is critical and how we can have women in our communities be more active and secure to participate in their own communities. I would like have resource and ideas on how to make this happen in my community.

  2. The Decolonization training made me realize how important creating spaces for learning authentic, cultural history is. The exchange of history and other narratives regarding origin felt empowering–knowledge is power. I felt like I had gained a formal education, where years of world history and textbooks had failed me. I also realized the need to have my voice heard about my experiences with my cultural identity and how I am situated in my ethnic group did a small amount for social healing of the injustices and injuries colonization inflicted on me and my people. In the future, more talk of naming the effects of colonization and the movement toward counteracting its reside on future generations is desirable.

  3. If I had the opportunity ti have a second decolonization training, I would like to specifically address the process of decolonization as well as tools that can be implemented for such. Moreover, I agree that this subject is complex and very lengthy, but I would also like to learn about how we as the colonized or internalized colonization and what can we do to embrace our own individual cultures and others without oppressing others. I had a amazing learning experience by sharing with the Tamajavi Fellows and I hope we can continue having this discussions.

    • I agree with Walter’s comment about exploring the specific ways that we were colonized, and the common ways that it presently impacts our communities. I also think it is powerful for us to identify the ways that our present generations can break the cycle.

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