Love, Study, Struggle: A Project
My students and I studied student activism and student movements around the world in a twice-weekly evening seminar during the Fall of 2021 (the hight of the delta surge).
We investigated how students learn in and through collective struggles for racial justice, Indigenous sovereignty, and human rights around the world and close to home. We wanted to develop collaborations, support each other under difficult circumstances, and reclaim joy in learning in, around and beyond institutions.
Love, Study, Struggle is a phrase we learned from Robin Kelley and the Black radical tradition. Kelley writes,
...if we are committed to genuine freedom, we have no choice but to love all. To love all is to fight relentlessly to end exploitation and oppression everywhere, even on behalf of those who think they hate us. This was Baldwin’s point—perhaps his most misunderstood and reviled point.
To love this way requires relentless struggle, deep study, and critique. Limiting our ambit to suffering, resistance, and achievement is not enough. We must go to the root—the historical, political, social, cultural, ideological, material, economic root—of oppression in order to understand its negation, the prospect of our liberation. Going to the root illuminates what is hidden from us, largely because most structures of oppression and all of their various entanglements are simply not visible and not felt (Kelley, Black Study, Black Struggle, 2016).
Here is a stable version of the "live syllabus" our seminar developed (a google doc we edited and changed throughout the semester). Most of the assigned readings are linked directly. All other readings are available on this google drive (email me for access).
Learning in community
During the semester we hosted two public events with grassroots scholar-activists-educators Latinos Unidos Siempre, water scholar Adrianna Nicolay (Diné), and geographer Olivia Orosco, who each have close ties to our communities.
We also greatly benefited from incredible guest classes by community leader and educator Delia Olmos García, university archivists Elizabeth Peters and Susan Irwin, and visits to the Gender Resource and Advocacy Center (GRAC), hosted by Surya, Jessie, and Lucia.
During the class, we discussed building an archive of the course resources and some of our research on student activism so they would be available to future students and community members. We are also hoping others will contribute to and add to this work. We hope to link to this work here soon.
Part of this project was sponsored by the Community Action Fund for Equity and Sustainability Fund, an incredible student-led group that supports social justice and sustainability projects on our university campus. CAFES offered wages for two students and honoraria for several of our guest speakers/educators from LUS, Adrianna Nicolay and Olivia Orosco. Thank you, CAFES.