Last semester, our two wonderful international students-- Maria Camila and Caty-- created a zine as their final project. Its title, translated into English, is "Decolonizing/Rooting Ourselves." The zine came out of their experiences throughout their time in Ecuador, exploring conflicts they encountered within their identities. This blog, a reflection on creating the zine from Maria Camila, is the first entry of a series of blogs delving into the zine and the process of creating it:
The idea for this zine rose out of the need to archive the rich knowledge Caty and I absorbed academically and experientially as Rehearsing Change students. We chose the themes that were particularly salient for us at the time: queerness in Ecuador, embodying decolonization, educating decoloniality, and living with the Machángara River.
Confronting head-on the constant struggle of identities-in-conflict, making a zine for us was also an attempt to assuage the anxieties and tensions that come with being multidimensional creatures. On my end, this meant asking questions like, “how can my process of decolonizing myself translate to pedagogy?” and “how do I find home in a land that doesn’t quite love me wholly as I am?” and subsequently taking pen to paper to find my truth. I find that the more I am harrowed by existential threats like colonization, heteronormativity, and environmental injustice, the more I find salvation through writing liberation, futures, in-betweens. Telling my story incarnates the spaces I find myself home in, when most categories and borders just don’t fully do me justice. Writing my truth makes the opaque tangible for me and for all those who feel like me. Creating this zine allows the invisible to become real.