Course I: Culture & Liberation in the US South
This course will ask the question ‘how can culture and music advance peoples liberation in the US South today?’ The course will uncover the roots of Blues music as a foundation of Black music globally and its evolution as cultural resistance to colonialism, capitalism, and white supremacy.
Class I: Introduction to Culture & Liberation in the US South
Class II: The Blues & its roots in Africa, Colonialism & Liberation
Class III: The Blues, Jazz, R&B: Resisting Capitalism & White Supremacy
Class IV: Hip Hop: Southern sounds, migration & urban rebellion.
Class V: Culture & Liberation in the US South today
University Sin Fronteras is organizing a ‘Liberation Spring’ semester on Tuesdays from 6-8pm starting
Class I: Decolonize! (from colonialism to Liberation)
Class II: Emancipatory education
Class III: Tex-Mex Revolutions (Historiography)
Class IV: Revolutionary Corridos (a critical cultural analysis)
Class V: Collective Synthesis (what did it all mean?) documented
The goal of the Liberation Spring Semester is to support leadership through inter-generational and intra-generational methodologies in order to bridge the ‘veteran’ leaders and social movement organizers and the new young activists just getting started.
Download the Registration Form for the LSS 2013 (154Kb PDF) (Updated on 03/26)
Download Springing Liberation by Decolonizing Now!’ (63Kb PDF)
When: April 2nd – April 30th 2013.
Where: The Movement Gallery – 1412 E. Commerce, San Antonio, TX
Tune in as the University without Walls joins Radio Diaspora every Saturday from 5-7pm on WRFG 89.3FM!
WRFG provides a voice for those who have been traditionally denied access to the broadcast media and the involvement of a broad base of community elements to guarantee that access.
In WRFG, the utilization of the foundation’s facilities and the access to its programs are prioriticed to the following communities:
- Those who continue to be denied free and open access to the broadcast media.
- Those who suffer oppression or exploitation based upon class, race, sex, age or creed or sexual orientation.
WRFG was the first Atlanta radio station since the 1950s to feature regional musical forms as blues, bluegrass and jazz..
|Atlanta||Blues, Culture & Liberation||3.20-4.17.2013|
|Atlanta||Theory & Praxis||4.12-5.3.2013|
|Atlanta||Palestine Liberation seminar||04/27/13|
|Atlanta||Synthesis Assembly UNSIF||05/11/13|
|Atlanta||Radio Diaspora Educ. Liberation||03/02/13|
|San Juan||Liberation Tools for organizing||04/01/13|
|San Juan||Decolonize PR seminar||04/01/13|
|San Antonio||Colonialism/Liberation course||04/01/13|
|San Antonio||Colonial & Liberation history seminar||04/01/13|
As we welcome the LIBERATION SPRING SEMESTER 2013, the University Sin Fronteras Board of Directors recognizes the valuable partnership with Atlanta, Detroit and San Juan and the valuable work of the Campus committees in formation.
The purpose of the these meeting is to work on the details of the upcoming LIBERATION SPRING semester and to get the flyer on the course out and get people to start registering for the course(s).
Download Meeting of the Atlanta Campus Committee on February, 27 2013 (27KB PDF)
Download Meeting of the Detroit Campus Committee on February, 27 2013 (27KB PDF)
Download Meeting of the San Juan Campus Committee on March, 7 2013 (27KB PDF)
The board of Directors, and all of the UNSIF community, welcomes San Antonio, Texas as a campus of the University Sin Fronteras.
The organizing meetings that took place in January and February of this years already marks a pace of development and organizing of the Campus Committee.
As the SAT Campus Committee (UNSIF), you outlined some proposals for the upcoming LIBERATION SPRING SEMESTER, including the following, Organizing a COURSE with the following classes: Read More
Download Welcome San Antonio Campus (80KB PDF)
Download UNSIF San Antonio Campus Juntas (96KB PDF)
The UNSIF builds power in communities and allows communities to hold that power through making knowledge accessible. Further, this knowledge that is prioritized in the UNSIF is emancipatory in that it lifts up the ways in which we/our communities have resisted and been resilient and transformative in our histories, and also that it liberates knowledge from dominant forces.
Also, it liberates communities from the oppressive histories and knowledges that are privileged in mainstream education. Doing this also builds leadership and shared understanding amongst community members. It erases the hierarchies created by the educational system and creates spaces for developing knowledge that is indigenous and communal. Read More
Download Compilation – papers – board mtg Feb. 2013 60KB PDF
Download Accomplishments Bd mtg Feb. 2013 30KB PDF
UNISF has now set up 10 campuses overall; four in operation, and 6 still to develop to the point of implementation.
2013 will serve to develop the campuses and the campus committees and therefore broaden the infrastructure and capacity of the UNSIF to put back Liberation into the social movements for systemic social change. Read More
Download the UNSIF – 2012 Annual Report (94KB PDF)
El seminario/tertulia “Arte y Sociedad” tuvo lugar satisfactoriamente. A través de las
tres sesiones llevadas a cabo, el grupo estuvo compuesto por unas 12 personas, donde cada una de ellas tuvieron una participación activa en las discusiones del grupo.
Como parte de las discusiones se comentó y reflexionó sobre el proceso de imaginar para el Cambio Social. La prioridad de discutir activamente la Imaginación surge debido a que dentro del entramado social, la organización entre las personas y su comunidad debe ser un proceso de acción y de imaginación. En tanto la comunidad imagine unida su propio porvenir, permanecerá unida en el proceso de cambio social para su bienestar colectivo.
La dinámica del dialogo fluyó a partir de que dentro del proceso artístico, la obra de arte es
considerada por muchos la creación “ultima” dentro de las múltiples ideas en dialogo que
conforman la obra. Viendo las analogías del proceso imaginativo artístico con el proceso de cambio social, se aprecia de manera más precisa el papel de la imaginación activa en procesos sociales, culturales y colectivos. Leer más – Read more
Download Arte y Sociedad – Reporte/Síntesis de las reuniones. Nov. 2012 (299KB PDF)
the course EMANCIPATION EDUCATION & ACTION For LIBERATION took place at the Atlanta Campus of University Sin Fronteras between October 15 and Nov 19, 2012 and these are the notes taken from the actual class dynamic:
Download the Compilation notes for emancipation autumn 2012 (200KB PDF)
Download Reflection papers written by student of the UNSIF ATL 2012 (324KB PDF)
1. Introduction and Life Maps (October 15)
- How have individual experiences related to knowledge for organizing?
- People describing “their moment” of awareness shed light on the combination of our experiences.
- The impact on social relationships of the commonality of individuals’ development
- The benefits of sharing with a supportive elder
- Someone else’s reactions to our stories reflecting back to one’s self
- Learning about the role of rape in the fighting in the Congo
- “Workers of the world, unite! We have nothing to lose but our chains!”
- Feeling light coming from each of us as crisscrossing beacons
- Everyone seemed special and powerful.
- Discovering the similarities across cultural groups
- Thinking more carefully about what I hold dear
- Realizing that this is a good group to be in
- This kind of education is energetic and liberating.
- It is a privilege to build liberation together through dialogue.
2. Power: Atlanta under Thirty-Five (Plus) Years of Black Rule (October 22)
- There have been many divisions in Atlanta, with some people coming and others leaving.
- For many, building a family has been more important than building a community.
- We need to pay attention to the strategies of the individuals representing us.
- Atlanta has become a symbol for and signal of apartheid in the context of twenty-first century capitalism.
- Having a black mayor or President can give us a false sense of independence.
- There can be a variety of good and bad conclusions about what political power for some black people has meant, including its having given some a false sense of security.
- Black rule (with a “Black Massa”) for over thirty-five yeras has included many missed opportunities.
- Much of the history has shown how power can corrupt.
- Political power is limited if it does not include economic power.
- There have been forms of black power in Atlanta for over a hundred years, since black businessmen on Auburn Avenue began moving in tandem with white elites, and the problems that have often accompanied access to power for some black individuals continue today.
- It has been possible to live an entire life in cities with black mayors (Cleveland, Detroit, Little Rock, Atlanta). For each administration, it has been important to decide who was really running the show.
- This history raises the question of whether we can have serious change without a mass movement.
- The problems that have come in part because of ignorance of history show how important it is to understand history, including developments such as the missing children of Atlanta.
- We have experienced some advances, but our institutions are still colonized.
- The people of Atlanta have not had a clear enough sense of liberation.
- There has been some upward mobility but not for all of the working poor.
3. Transformative Leadership (October 29)
- Leaders can be seen as equivalent to root doctors.
- Leaders need to pay attention to when changing conditions require new strategies.
- At times there have been too many leaders and at times not enough.
- By realizing how colonized the standard idea of leadership has been, we can decide to rethink what leadership should involve.
- Leaders without a base cannot have true success.
- Leaders come out of their experiences in struggles.
- There are different kinds of transformative leadership.
- We are, in one way or another, all leaders.
4. Action and Power (November 12)
- Since nation-states affect movements, we have a stake in their existence and nature.
- Power is divided by too much emphasis on “isms.”
- Reactionary forces gain power when they preempt us.
- The discipline of the line
- The need for the liberation of education
- The problems with “push” and “pull” models of leadership
- Protests can lead to the power to build.
- We need to learn from both the strengths and weaknesses of past and present movements.
- The biggest enemy of liberatory power is FEAR, which gives power to the people’s enemies.
- We need to keep seeking and carrying out actions that will free people of their fear.
5. Emancipatory Education (November 19)
- Emancipatory education is an active process.
- The activities of Project South involve emancipatory education.
- The focus need to be on how to enable everyone to learn about liberation.
- We need to reject the standard criteria for who should and should not receive certain kinds of education.
- We’re all learning a complicated dance.
- We need to be clear about what we need to be liberated from.
- We are all learners and all teachers.
- Being with all of this group involves breaking out of the box of a standard classroom.
- There is something powerful rooted in people’s experiences and definitions of liberation.
- We each have different kinds of knowledge which we need to share with each other.
- To achieve liberation, we first have to decide what we need.
- We need to think about how our own work connects to liberation.
- Colonial education is so mean-spirited that individuals’ educational successes can make the colonial institutions even more powerful.
- The way Jenice carried out this class illustrated how liberatory education works.
- We need to consider the roots of education.
- Liberatory education requires breaking down old boxes and sharing knowledge.
- Emancipating education is a long-term project, but liberating language can help speed it up.
- The imparting of knowledge is not the same thing as true education.
What: Art & Society Seminar
When: November 14,21 & 28 at 7:00 pm
Where: Casa-Fundación Arana, San Juan, PR
La Universidad Sin Fronteras, en colaboración con la Fundación Arana, le invitamos a participar del seminario Arte y Sociedad el cual será llevado a cabo en la Casa-Fundación Arana en el Viejo San Juan. La clase constará de 3 reuniones los días miércoles (14, 21, 28) de noviembre a las 7pm.
- Introducción y bienvenida de parte U. Sin Fronteras
- Imaginación y cambio social a través del Arte
- Autogestión y Arte: facilitación y creación proyectos artísticos
- Clausura y síntesis de seminario
- Presentación sobre la Universidad Sin fronteras
Join Project South for the second course of the University Sin Fronteras, Atlanta Campus. Five classes will explore social movement histories specific to Atlanta, collective action, and leadership in global movements.
As a critical part of the People’s First 100 Days, Monday evening classes will prepare organizers and community members to connect education to action for building movements.
Register online at: http://www.projectsouth.org/usfregister
- Oct 15-Class 1: Life Road Map? (Stephanie). How we got here? Education Liberation orientation (mission & vision) and OL
- Oct 19-Class 2: Radical South Tradition: Atlanta at cross roads (Emery)
- Oct 29-Class 3: Social Movement Leadership (Glory)
- Nov 12-Class 4: Action theory and practice (Ruben Solis)
- Nov 19-Class 5: Emancipatory Education (Jenice View & Les)
By Rubén Solís García
Note: This reflection paper is written in the context of connecting Lowndes County. Alabama and the Southern Movement Alliance Assembly and the broader US South struggle for Emancipation and Freedom, and the travel to and experience in South Africa (Capetown) and the Democratic Revolution and social transformation taking place there after Apartheid in1994.
Coming from the Southern Movements (organized by project South & Southern Movements Alliance) gathering the Southern Movements Assembly, held in Lowndes County, Alabama, I am struck by the connection (geo politically) between both regions, the US South and South Africa, as a travel to Capetown, separated by thousands of miles, yet connected by people and history. The connecting tie is the trans-atlantic connection, historically based on the slave trade triangle lasting five (5) centuries, where millions of Black people from Africa ended in the South of the United States under forced labor (slavery) and develop ed the original accumulation of capital that served for the development of several industrial revolutions, 19th and 20th centuries. The US South became the home of millions of Black that have been in continual resistance and struggle for full emancipation.
The 300 people who participated in the Southern Movement Assembly (SMA) were young people, Black, and females. Generationally, the SMA had people whose ages ranged from children and toddlers, Adolescents, teenagers, young adults, and elders. The SMA organized by Project South was made up of the participating organizations were diverse, including Indigenous,Latinos/as, Blacks, Asians, Whites, and LGBTQ community. Lowndes County, Alabama is the place where ‘Black Power’ was developed in the struggles of 1965, the LCFO, the Freedom tent City set up after people were pushed off their land, because the people dared to vote, who were stopped from exercising their right to vote by the white establishment and the KKK violence. The racial violence resulted in many activists murdered. Moreover, the actions in the South and Southwest, the POWER movements with the Liberation thinking and organizing, led to the enactment of the Civil Rights Act, and the Voter Rights Act of 1965. [Read More]
Read full South x South Africa 2012 Document (113KB PDF)
October 15-November 19, 2012
Mondays (6-8 PM)
After a very successful 2nd Strategic Meeting of the UNSIF board of directors in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico at the Foundation & Casa Arana, University Sin Fronteras kicked of the first ever social movement University, and the first semester for the UNSIF, the LIBERATION SUMMER SEMESTER in Atlanta, Georgia. The LIBERATION SUMMER SEMESTER ran from July 11 to 15 of August, and consisted of a course entitled: Liberation & Colonialism and it consisted of six (6) classes of two (2) hours each class per week. The course ran six (6) weeks. Twenty nine (29) organizers, activists and educator practitioners of the Atlanta area made up the class with its highest qualities being its diversity and the high commitment of participation. The majority were youth, of color, women, and were multi-gender, multi-cultural, multi-national, multi-generational, multi-lingual, multi-ethnic, and most were poor, or working class.
So what now?
The partnership between University Sin Fronteras (UNSIF) and Project South, growing from this summer liberation experience, evolved into an Atlanta Liberation CAMPUS. The Atlanta Campus organized a WORKING GROUP on Education, Leadership, and Organizational development to coordinate along with the Co- Directors (Stephanie G & Emery W) of Project South, the FALL semester course 2012. Already, a course has been chosen (Atlanta crossroads of social protest; Global geo-politic center, Leadership and Emancipatory Education for social movements) the semester dates have been established (Oct 15 to Nov 1). UNSIF has also established a San Juan, Puerto Rico Campus (Independence Campus?), and Reynaldo Padilla Teruel, Vice President of UNSIF, is coordinating. Casa/Fundacion Arana (Luis Melendez) has graciously made its space available for the class once more (UNSIF has held its two board meetings there). The SJU six week course will focus on the CORE curriculum (multi thematic) with four areas; economy, globalization and capitalism, Colonialism and Liberation, emancipatory education and Art & culture as resistance. The course will be from October to November (dates to be est).
The San Antonio CAMPUS is also being organized for the FALL Semester with a course on the Tex-Mex Revolution and social movements today. The course will be coordinated with Southwest Workers Union, Fuerza Unida and possibly Esperanza Peace & Justice Center, plus other organizations.
Conversations and communication is taking place at this moment with Curtis Acosta, a teacher from the Tuscon area High School, where the schools banned Ethnic studies, and banned hundreds of books. The TUCSON (Arizona) Campus is looking at a possible course on ethnic studies and liberation, racism, colonialism and Indigenous history could take place in october and November. A Peoples Movement Assembly on educational justice might also be in the works.
The UNSIF FALL SEMESTER 2012 is in full swing. The success of the Summer Liberation Course in Atlanta has given UNSIF a lot of momentum and energy. The UNSIF will attempt to organize the 3rd Strategic Board of directors meeting in the end of 2012 or the beginning of 2013. The meeting is planned to be held in Atlanta, Georgia. Project South will host the UNSIF board meeting. The purpose of the meeting is to synthesis a summary of the experience of the UNSIF since the summer liberation semester and the Fall semester results and social movement impact. Additionally, the board will envision the plan of action of UNSIF for the Spring 2013, and Summer Liberation II semester, and the new year starting in September 2013 for the Fall semester.
Rubén Solís García, President
On August 29 the last class of the 2012 Liberation Summer Semester took place.
The goals of this final class were:
- To synthesize and articulate the knowledge developed throughout the course
- To establish an Atlanta Campus Working Group to move forward
- To outline Fall and Spring Semester ideas
I. Introductions & Checkins
II. Read and Review the supercompilation of course writings
III. Review three primary questions:
- WHAT IS COLONIALISM?
- WHAT IS DECOLONIZATION?
- WHAT IS THE UNIVERSITY SIN FRONTERAS?
IV. Small groups discuss one of the questions and present synthesis to full group for
feedback and adjustment
V. Southern Movement Assembly
- Delegation from the USF
- Roles at the Assembly to document, analyze, and integrate into the University course work
VI. NEXT STEPS – Atlanta Campus
- Working Group – How do folks want to support the continuation of the USIF?
- OLE – Organization, Leadership, & Education
VII. Closing reflections
Present were Rasha, Glory, Lizette, Kwame, Sokari, Jerome, Cita, James, Mara, Les, Steph, Taliba,Carolyn, Rita, Sobukwe, and Angie.
Read full Synthesis Assembly – Liberation summer 2012 Document (91KB PDF)
What: Assembly of Liberation Summer Semester class 2012
Who: University Sin Fronteras & Project South
When: August 29, 2012 6-8 PM
9 Gammon Ave SE
To synthesis the liberation summer class experience
To plan the class for the “Freedom Fall” Semester
To re-group the liberation summer class
The core curriculum of the UNSIF composed of four (4) core value areas: liberation and colonialism, emancipation and emancipatory education, economics, capitalism and globalization and social movement and self development. The Liberation Summer Semester course was within the colonialism & liberation curricular area.
The course on Liberation and Colonialism was made up of six (6) classes of two (2) hours each meeting once a week on wednesdays evenings 6-8 PM.
Participating students filled out an application including a scholarship section if they could not pay the $200 tuition.
Most students received a scholarship. All 29 student-participants came to every class with few exceptions.
The classes were content driven based on practice-theory-practice, and the core curriculum and the OLE methodology, that focuses on shared knowledge, bringing the voices and stories of the student-participants to the center of the class/table, and building a body of knowledge including new knowledge, as a result.
The class dynamics have included oral presentations, small group discussion and analysis, round robin (around the table) discussions, multi-media presentations, and sharing their compelling stories is part of the synthesis process of the course as a whole in a peer evaluation approach.
Read full 2012 Liberation Summer in Atlanta – Lesson Learned Document (80KB PDF)
Download notes and materials from Class 4, 5 and 6
Class 6 Report – Jenice View (613KB PDF)
Class 6 Notes - Key Points (75KB PDF)
Class 5 Report – Rose Brewer (382KB PDF)
Class 5 Compilation - Slave Trade and Capitalism (32KB PDF)
Class 5 Notes – Rose Brewer (18KB PDF)
Class 4 Report – Jerome & Rita (410KB PDF)
Class 4 Compilation – Gender, Race, Class and the Creation of White (32KB PDF)
Class 4 Notes – Jerome Scott and Rita Valenti (108KB PDF)
The strategy of focusing on the personal stories of individuals, whether in the past or today, is not a trivial approach since it reveals the extent of personal conflicts and failings in the lives of people too often portrayed as perfect heroes. We need to see ourselves in the lives of the people we study. Including biographical information about more than one leader for each movement can help demystify activism and leadership by showing that a movement’s success relies not on the existence of a solitary, heroic leader who seems capable of more than any of us could do but on the determination, contributions, and cooperation of many ordinary human beings.
A social justice orientation to learning often reveals more complexities to the history than are usually recognized, particularly how many people were involved in specific developments. A group process can be difficult, requiring a clear purpose and sensitive facilitators. We have a number of methods to counter our lack of knowledge about the past–including oral history (only for the recent past), family stories, field studies, analysis of documents–but we have to accept the reality that we cannot know everything. It is important to think about the most useful questions, even if we cannot find documented answers for them.