This course is offered by our study abroad partner, Pachaysana, online from their site in Ecuador, with local educators.
An ever-growing number of students, scholars, and activists criticize our educational institutions for upholding colonial structures, and via numerous movements are calling for "decolonization." Any effort to decolonize our education must go well beyond the content of what we teach in the classroom. In addition to what we are learning, we must explore how we learn, where we learn, and with whom we learn. We also must think about what "decolonization" means, taking into consideration the lands on which our campuses and communities are located. This course addresses decolonization through the lens of critical interculturality, referring to Catherine Walsh's critique of multiculturalism as functional or relational interculturality. Bringing in readings from Indigenous and Latin American scholars and taking part in workshops facilitated by local Ecuadorian community members, we will use interactive methods to explore some of the most challenging concepts related to decolonization, including "decolonization is not a metaphor," epistemic justice, border thinking, and embodied methodologies. Those concepts will then be examined with regards to the realities on our college campuses and our communities, and we will begin to dream about moving from the "functional" to the "critical." By the end of the course, informed by the readings and interactions with community-based educators in Ecuador, students will formulate clear questions and identify potential strategies for applying critical interculturality at their college campuses.