Decolonizing Competence, Part I
Those who can, do. Those who can't, decolonize. Impressions from the "Decolonizing Rigor in Higher Education" talk, Jan. 31, 2023.
We thank our faithful readers McGoohan and Mason Goad for their help with the screenshots and impressions.
The Center for Innovative Teaching held a forum entitled “Decolonizing ‘Rigor’ in Higher Education”. What does it mean, you ask? Look no further than our very own learned colleagues who spent over an hour deconstructing, dissecting, and tearing apart the bigoted notion of “Rigor” in Western “science”, and building back much better. Did we mention that none of the speakers is a scientist?
Here are the highlights:
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1:03 Zoom room opens late with distorted music that goes in and out of audibility.
1:04 “We are setting up the huddle cam.” (huddle cam? Sounds warm and fuzzy.)
1:06 Second musical piece is played with minimal clarity with the announcement: “People are welcome to dance.”
1:08 Finally managed to get sound from a microphone — for a bit. The entire presentation is marred with technical difficulties. The organizers successfully decolonized the ability to use zoom.
1:12. Sound comes back. Time for a Land Acknowledgment.
We are on Indian land.
We acknowledge and offer respect to the past, present and future Traditional Custodians of the land on which we work and live:
the Masssachusett, Nauset,
Wampanoag, Nipmuck, and other Indigenous Peoples.
Amen and Awomen.
We can finally start. The declared goal is to deface, dismantle, decolonize and destroy Western civilization, including rigor, which is a white-male-cis-hetero Western concept, and the objectively true fact that there is no such thing as an objective truth.
No DEI talk is complete without citing Tema Okun and her objectively true, rigorous study of white supremacy characteristics.
Western = bad. Indigenous = good. Everything has to be re-imagined by noble indigenous ways of knowing. How many of the speakers lived or are willing to live in a non-Western country? You guessed it.
If we “Decolonize rigor”, what do we establish instead? Normally we never get an answer to this question, but this time we were pleasantly surprised! Post-colonial Rigor is lived experience, multiple ways of knowing, intersectional approach to epistemology, justice and most importantly power (in case dignity and love cannot persuade the pesky scientists to decolonize themselves). And then some more power. We are yet to figure out how to apply the above to the sciences (safely), but hey, we’re sure there’s a way! Or is there?
Remember the ass intelligence incidence that took place at the College of Science and Math? Well, the ass is not alone. The tiny cilia in the lungs operate collectively in an act of self-care to protect the organism. Yes, it’s true! Isn’t it amazing? and it’s even better than the ass intelligence because we established that self-care is much better than intelligence.
A late-comer asked the presenters to define colonization. Luckily, the answer was readily available from the previous forum.
Amen and Awomen.
There you have it, folx. How it will end? We think we know how.
If you think it can’t get any wackier - you’re wrong! The Q+A and participants feedback were even juicier. Coming soon…
Apologies for the low resolution. We will replace it if we get the slides.