Indigitize: Youth Media Activism

 

We are all the defendants. We, as a whole, have commit a crime and must right our wrongs.

We, one entity of human beings, have forgotten accountability. And now is the time to remember.

 

Our goal is to generate media access for productions by indigenous students.

Today, media is a universal language. It is a language that most everyone understands in some form or another.

And soon everyone will understand it.

Everyone on this earth will be born into a media age. So now is the time to learn.

– Indigenous students included! –

One must embrace the tools of their time if their goals are social change.

And we must allow everyone the access to these tools and knowledge systems. It is unfair and unjust to keep minority groups out of the media sphere because of money, power, and all the -isms under the sun.

Although, it is precisely what this capitalistic system has aimed and almost, if not already, succeeded in doing.

It is now our job to dismantle that system of oppression.

Our goal is to take the language back from the powerful who distribute it at their will and for their gain.

To take back what wasn’t theirs to take in the first place.

To create a new tradition of knowledge sharing.

 

Storytelling and oral traditions are the histories of Indigenous communities.

Observations of climate change over thousands of years are passed down through storytelling.

Stories form a collective knowledge about the history of the earth.

Indigenous epistemology is cultivated in storytelling.

 

Storytelling as a tool to understanding media is engaging.

Indigenous and non-indigenous students will learn from media production.

It will be a tool used in their everyday lives.

A tool used to deconstruct the dominant structure of education that is built upon Western ways of knowing.

Media storytelling will decolonize their education.

Indigitize will give access to education.

Indigitize will engage students in learning.

Indigitize will motivate.

Indigitize will activate.

The ability to participate in western knowledge systems seems necessary for economic, social, political, and physical advancement in today’s society.

 

We must think critically of the implications that taking on a traditional knowledge system bears.

Is it appropriate for an institution of the dominant society to use methods of communication traditionally used in Indigenous communities?

Is it cultural appropriation?

We must build relationships, before we collect stories.

Thoughtful and respectful relationships with members of these/our communities.

We must work with Indigenous peoples.

We have no authority to use these knowledge systems without having the background knowledge and history of the communities it stems from.

We must listen to what the people of these communities want.

We must respect their wishes.

We must weave relationship knots.

Because without relationships, without little bits of love, we will get no where in life.

 

The interconnectedness of humans is what creates humanity.

The love and relationships we share with others connect us to a giant web of knots that tie us all together.

We have a responsibility to maintain this humanity and therefore to continue to love.

 

How do we act in a place that is very different from ours culturally?

How do we love in this new place?

What are the systems of respect that are in place?

How do we navigate them appropriately?

How do we do research with Indigenous communities in an effective and socially responsible manner?

What implications might this have on Pitzer college and the Indigenous communities we are working with if it is not done appropriately?

 

Clarity and communication are important tools.

We can use the relationships we have already built,

But it is the responsibility of the people doing the project to maintain these relationships.

To maintain mutual respect and appreciation.

Total clarity of motives and goals gives context to storytellers.

Many stories cannot be told to just anyone.

Storytelling relies on context and relationships.

Indigitize will only be effective if communication and clarity are employed.

 

How do we decolonize media?

 

Indigitize.

 

A phone drive.

Using old smartphones as cameras and editing tools.

Collecting discarded devices to recirculate into the media ecosystem.

But this is only one part.

Along with the tools must come the means of using them.

Sharing the knowledge of how these tools can be used, but allowing the deconstruction of dominant media styles. The White way is not the Right way.

This is what the indigenous students at Sherman are doing in Indigitize; this education is what all indigenous and non-indigenous students should be receiving.

– A decolonization of media –

It is the responsibility of the people with power and privilege to work towards a more equal system of power distribution in our nation and in this world.

 

We are all the defendants. We, as a whole, have commit a crime and must right our wrongs.

We, one entity of human beings, have forgotten accountability. And now is the time to remember.

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About alexamuniz

Media Studies major at Scripps College '16.

One response »

  1. […] well as a Phone Drive campaign on Pitzer Campus and the 5Cs. The Indigitize movement is writing a manifesto on media, education, and access. Students have been producing media that has been and will be […]

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