The Decolonize Un-Conference was a two day event founded in 2018 for organizers and activists of the global majority (also known as "people of color") to un-learn, heal, and connect across human, animal, and environmental justice movements through acknowledging the impacts of colonization.
Together, we unpacked the whiteness in our own organizing, and in our relationships with ourselves, each other, and the natural world. We had difficult conversations, and embraced anger and discomfort as teachers. Specific topics and speakers varied from city to city and included race, anti-blackness, anti-indigeneity, the gender binary, art as activism, relationship to land and animals, food, body image, mental health, navigating academia, language, and spirituality. We learned a lot from each other and ourselves, building and bridging new wisdoms and knowledges together, for free.
Montañita is champurria- a mixed race (Indigenous and white), hispanic, trans masculine and non-binary Andean. He has been observing, analyzing, and unpacking whiteness since he was a child growing up in diaspora in a predominantly white and wealthy neighborhood where his mother worked as a nanny.
A first generation graduate, Montañita has a degree in Communication Studies from Ithaca College, where he further developed his research and writing skills around historical and contemporary culture, communication theory and rhetoric, sociology, interpersonal relationship dynamics, and sex and gender. He loves to dissect the complex, nuanced, and contradictory- that is after all what his existence has been like as a person who has always lived at the in-between. Being both a part of many communities and simultaneously outcasted from them all, he often finds himself in the position of challenging normalized categories and definitions, and creating new thought ways of understanding self and society at large.
Montañita built and managed a national grassroots nonprofit organization from scratch in order to fund this work and support many other projects, and is now transitioning to being a full-time creative and consultant. Subscribe below for updates.