Hi there! ^_^ For this week’s post, I am including former OISE Ambassador Roxana’s thoughts on a conference that she attended, volunteered for, and was a part of recently at OISE. I will also be including my thoughts on her experience at the end.
The Decolonizing Conference
From November 3-5, OISE held the Decolonizing Conference 2016, commemorating the 20th Anniversary of The Centre for Integrative Anti-Racism Studies (CIARS). The conference was a huge success, and it brought students from all over Canada and different universities around the world. During the Conference, lots of presentations and panel were exhibited, as well as amazing keynotes. Professors Eve Tuck, Walter Mignolo, and Joyce King were incredible. Their insights allowed us to rethink the current Canadian and worldwide political and social context, from decolonizing and indigenous knowledge backgrounds.
During the Conference, it was also really amazing to see the people from Pacha Arts, a store owned by Indigenous Ecuadorian activists, who are continuously supporting indigenous people in Canada as well.
I had the opportunity to present in a panel with all Latinx people. It was an amazing opportunity for all of us. We received so much love after our presentation and multiple comments from students saying that they had never seen a presentation by only Latinx people in Canadian universities. These comments made me appreciate even more the existence of the Decolonizing Conference, and of course, the possibility that OISE gives to its faculty and students to hold such a wonderful event.
Final thoughts from Anna
I didn’t attend this conference myself, but am glad that OISE as an institution is so open to a variety of perspectives and life experiences. This openness leads to a richer and more diverse academic life. Roxana’s involvement in this conference is also a good example of how somebody who is in a non-thesis graduate program can still get involved in the scholarly and academic life of OISE.
You can read the Spanish language version of this post, also written by Roxana, HERE.