Unbought, Unbossed, & Unbroken:
Resisting Systemic Oppression
Tuesday, November 12, 2019 to Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019
The theme of this year’s teach-in is Unbought, Unbossed, and Unbroken.
It is taken from and extends the “Unbought and Unbossed” slogan for
Shirley Chisholm’s historic 1972 presidential campaign. Chisholm was the first Black candidate to run for a major national political party’s nomination and first woman to run for the Democratic Party nomination. She was a revolutionary activist, educator, public servant, and catalyst for change. She was the first Black U.S. Congresswoman and served in the U.S. House of Representatives for 14 years. We honor Chisholm’s legacy by convening a space this November for learning, thinking, reflecting,
and resisting systemic oppression.
We would like to acknowledge the many people who may be unable to participate in this teach-in due to systemic oppressions that create direct and indirect barriers to accessing education. Barriers to access are created by, for example, restrictive immigration laws and policies, detention of asylum seekers, deportation policies, undocumented status, poverty, imprisonment of political dissidents, and/or restrictions on movement and education that individuals living under military occupation face (such as Palestinians residing under Israeli rule (http://right2edu.birzeit.edu/). We stand in solidarity with those who may be potentially interested in engaging in our teach-in, yet are unable to join us due to these forms of systemic oppression. Understanding these barriers and the need to take action against systemic oppression is why spaces like this teach-in are necessary and urgent.
In this spirit, then, we also want to acknowledge that this event takes place on the unceded territory and traditional homelands of the Massachusett, Nipmuc, and Wampanoag peoples, who are the present and traditional stewards of this land. We are uninvited guests on this land. May this acknowledgment inform our work and our learning together and commit us to the struggle for decolonization in Turtle Island and beyond.
Tues., Nov. 12
9:30 am - 7 pm
CC-2545 and CC-2551
9:30-10:45 The 2020 Election: Electoral Politics, Social Movements, and the Urgency of
Now. Location: CC-2545
Randy Albelda, Economics; Luis Jiménez, Political Science; Cedric Woods, Critical Ethnic and Community Studies (CECS) and Institute for New England Native American Studies (INENAS)
This session considers the complexities of the 2020 Presidential election as well as broader political transformation. How do we address the contemporary crisis in 2020, while also working to advance social movements with the capacity to radically restructure society in the long-term?
11-12:15 Sex and Gender: Deconstructing Categories. Location: CC-2545
Elliot Marrow, Clinical Psychology
Categories we use today for gender and sexuality have not always been what they are now. How did we start using these labels? How have other times and places viewed gender and sexuality? This session will look at both historical accounts and modern interviews on sex/gender then compare them to our own understandings of sex and gender.
12:30-1:45 Women of Color Organizing, Solidarity, and Wellness. Location: CC-2545
Ester Shapiro, Jennifer Jeune, and Ashley Torres, Critical Ethnic and Community Studies
How do we create Women of Color collective identities grounded in unique intersectional lived experiences (gender, race, ethnicity, immigration status, social class or caste) while promoting empowered solidarity towards gender equity for all? Our dialogue will emphasize cross-community connections and opportunities supporting coalitional consciousness, personal wellness & social justice activism.
12:30-2:30 Social Movement Graphics Workshop
Cat Mazza, Art Location: Campus Center Second Floor Terrace
Ink paper, t-shirts and other recycled scraps with UMB student designed social movement stencils. Graphics activating movement culture around empowerment, immigrant, housing and reproductive rights and more. On display are sample stencils, prints, books and zines with the aim of social engagement. Broaden your awareness around traditions and strategies of blending art and activism.
2-3:15 Challenges to Solidarity at UMass Boston Location: CC-2545
Anneta Argyres, Professional Staff Union; Shaleah Rather, Classified Staff Union; Joe Ramsey, Faculty and Staff Union
From budget cuts to creeping privatization, the climate of state disinvestment in public higher education makes building worker-student solidarity across campus more crucial than ever, and yet also in some ways more challenging. What obstacles stand in the way of building a cross-sector campus movement that can meet the threats to UMB's public urban mission? What perspectives and strategies can help us to overcome these obstacles and build a stronger, united labor and community movement at UMB?
4-5:15 FEATURED SESSION: Anti-Imperialism and Anti-Authoritarianism? Understanding Iranian Politics from the U.S. Location: Alumni Lounge (CC-2551)
Arash Davari, Whitman College
Can we think about social justice in Iran from the United States? If so, on what grounds? This teach-in surveys contemporary U.S.-Iran relations and domestic Iranian politics from the 1953 coup to the present to address the specific challenges of calling for social justice in Iran as residents of the U.S.
5:30 - 6:45 FEATURED SESSION: Screening and Discussion of the Documentary Film
Chisholm ’72: Unbought and Unbossed Location: Alumni Lounge (CC-2551)
Keith Jones, Africana Studies; Paul Watanabe, Political Science; Laurie Nsiah Jefferson, Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy
This session will discuss the extraordinary courage and vision of Shirley Chisholm, the first Black candidate to run for a major national political party’s nomination and the first woman to run for the Democratic Party nomination. As the first Black U.S. Congresswoman, Chisholm served in the U.S. House of Representatives for 14 years. What are her lasting achievements and how might we carry her radical legacy forward?
Wed., Nov. 13
9am – 6:30pm
CC-2540 and CC-2551
9-9:50 White Supremacy at the Ballot Box Location: CC-2540
Travis Johnston, Political Science
Access at the ballot box remains a
highly contested issue as political elites attempt to increase or decrease
participation to serve their ideological ends. This teach-in will explore how
voting restrictions, from Jim Crow to Shelby County v. Holder, are deployed
in the maintenance of white supremacy.
10-10:50 Addressing Burnout for Activists of Color Location: CC-2540
Kaitlyn Gorman and Anna Hall, UMB-UR-BEST
Activists of color experience different kinds of burden when doing activist work around racial and ethnic identity, including burnout. In this workshop, we will discuss the ways that activists of color resisting racism experience burnout, and ways we can resist this burnout and sustain activism.
11-11:50 Circle Keeping as a Restorative Justice Practice Location: CC-2540
Shannon Hughley, Clinical Psychology
By focusing on the questions “who has been harmed?”, “what are their needs?”, and “whose obligations are these?”, restorative justice provides an alternative framework to thinking about and responding to harm. This session will experientially explore how indigenous circle-keeping practice can be used to facilitate restorative discussions and processes.
12-12:50 BDS and Palestinian Liberation Location: CC-2540
Heike Schotten, Political Science and Faculty & Staff for Justice in Palestine (FSJP); Rajini Srikanth, English and FSJP
This session explains what the international Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement is with respect to justice for Palestine, why it came about, and what its demands are. It presents the challenges as well as the potential of BDS in the long struggle for Palestinian liberation.
1-1:50 FEATURED SESSION: Free Speech and the Palestine Exception: BDS in the
Commonwealth Location: CC-2540
Khury Petersen-Smith, Institute of Policy Studies and Black 4 Palestine; Ava Dimond and Rabiya Ismail, Tufts Students for Justice in Palestine; Sarah Wunsch, ACLU (ret.). Moderated by Elsa Auerbach (English, emerita, and FSJP) and Jeff Melnick (American Studies and FSJP)
Attacks on BDS have reached epidemic proportions in the United States: Massachusetts has not been exempt. From the statehouse to college campuses, a strange alliance of right-wing politicians, evangelicals, and liberal Zionists have attempted to carve out a "Palestine exception" to the first amendment. We’ll hear about federal and state legislation, Israeli–funded organizations attacking higher education and students, and the growing movement to fight back.
2-3:00 Dialoguing Across Social Identities Location: CC-2540
Sam Duterville and Matthew Hagler, UMB-UR-BEST
In this workshop, we will discuss the social identities we hold, such as race, gender, sexual orientation, social class, and dis/ability status, how systematic oppression inhibits effective/helpful dialogue across identity status, and ways to facilitate these dialogues in order to form coalitions against oppression. The workshop will include experiential exercises that ask participants to reflect upon and share the aspects of their identity that feel salient.
3:30-5:00 FEATURED SESSION: Re-Mapping Relations of Race and Capital
Sarika Chandra, Wayne State University Location: CC-2551 Alumni Lounge
Escalating political crises register the urgent need to theorize the relationship between race and political economy. This talk, part of an ongoing collaborative project with Chris Chen, moves beyond impasses in conventional accounts of the contemporary US racial order by remapping the relationship between race and capitalist accumulation.
5:00-6:30 FEATURED SESSION: Exploring Beyond the Boundaries of Refugee Rights
Location: CC-2551 Alumni Lounge
Philip Kretsedemas, Sociology; Irene Scharf, UMass Law Immigration Law Clinic; Denise Muro, Conflict Resolution, Human Security, and Global Governance and Refugees Welcome! Boston
This event will involve participants in a critical and exploratory discussion about refugee rights, focusing on case studies of Central American, Syrian and Haitian refugees. The main question we’re going to explore is: Who gets left out of established ways of defining displacement and asylum, and why?
Thurs., Nov. 14
9:30am - 6 pm
CC-2545 and CC-2551
9:30-10:45 Multilevel Stigma and Transgender Health Outcomes and Well-being
Suha Ballout, College of Nursing and Health Sciences Location: CC-2545
Transgender and gender non-binary (TGNB) persons are subjected to multilevel stigma and stressors including social exclusion, prejudice, discrimination, and violence. These experiences can cause mental and physical health negative outcomes. The purpose of this presentation is to examine the multi-level stigma experiences by TGNB and the impact on health and wellbeing.
11:00-12:15 FEATURED SESSION: Indigenous Commemorative Practices and Community-Building Initiatives in Native New England and Beyond
Location: CC-2551 Alumni Lounge
Deedy Wyman (Natick Nipmuc), organizer of the Annual Deer Island Sacred Paddle and Walk; Jim Peters (Mashpee Wampanoag), Mass Commission of Indian Affairs. Moderated by Cedric Woods, NAIS and CECS.
This session addresses the theme of being “unbroken,” by focusing on Indigenous resiliency through grassroots commemorative practices and community-building initiatives. In particular, our session will highlight two examples of significance to our local context: 1) The Annual Deer Island Sacred Paddle; and 2) The St. David’s Island Indian Reconnection Festival.
12:30-1:45 The Fight for Free College! Location: CC-2545
Sydney Little, Public Higher Education Network of Massachusetts (PHENOM)
The Public Higher Education Network of Massachusetts (PHENOM) organizes across the state for affordable, accessible, and high-quality public colleges and universities in Massachusetts. Join us to discuss why your education is so expensive and how we can harness the power on our campus to change that!
2:00-3:15 Strategies for Resisting Racism Location: CC-2545
Karen Suyemoto, Psychology & Critical Ethnic and Community Studies (CECS)
This interactive workshop will briefly discuss the nature and effects of racism for people of color before focusing on sharing and developing strategic responses to racial discrimination that promote agency, support our goals and values, and protect personal wellbeing. We will focus mostly on relational responses, with some consideration of systemic or organizational responses.
4:30-6:00 FEATURED SESSION: Surveillance and Policing of Muslim Students Jarib Rahman, Muslim Justice League Location: Alumni Lounge (CC-2251)
We will cover the issue of surveillance of Muslim students in Massachusetts and elsewhere, the different ways in which the targeting and criminalization of Muslim students take place, including under the federal Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) campaign. We will also cover general theories underlying CVE and its centrality to Islamophobia.