Archives in Common: Migrant Practices/Knowledges/Memory is lead by Mellon Seminar on Public Engagement and Collaborative Research Faculty Leader Ángeles Donoso Macaya (Borough of Manhattan Community College, Department of Modern Languages) an immigrant professor, researcher and organizer based in New York City. She is the author of The Insubordination of Photography: Documentary Practices under Chile’s Dictatorship (2020) and co-editor of Latina/os of the East Coast: A Critical Reader (2015).

Archives in Common: Migrant Practices/Knowledges/Memory brings together community organizers, members of immigrant communities, and members of the university community to 1) assist in the support and expansion of undocu-immigrant-led initiatives (cooperatives, workshops, and gardens) devised in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and 2) think collectively about how to build an archive of the commons during a crisis. The archive’s form, structure, and contents will emerge out of the collaborative process of thinking, working, creating, and sustaining life together.

Events, Articles, Research & Scholarship:


Wednesday, October 14th, 2020, 6:30 PM: The Undocumented-Led Struggle for Freedom: A Conversation with the Authors of Eclipse of Dreams



Join us Wednesday, October 14th for The Undocumented-Led Struggle for Freedom, a conversation with 4 of the 6 authors Marco Saavedra, Claudia Muñoz, Mariela Nuñez-Janes, and Stephen Pavey of Eclipse of Dreams, a timely book which recounts, via self–authored testimonial narratives and collective storytelling, the journey of six activists who met “somewhere in between classrooms, academic conferences, and organizing for the DREAM Act.” Their paths crossed in 2010, the year when the Senate failed to pass the DREAM Act. For this heterogeneous group comprised of undocumented youth activists and activist-scholars, the notorious failure of the DREAM Act revealed the paradoxical position of immigrants in their struggle for “inclusion.” As they poignantly ask in the Introduction: “What if our dreams, the very scope of our horizons, what we hoped for ourselves and others, was limited by the framework in which we expressed them, the American Dream itself?"

Click here to register and for more information about this event
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This event will be ASL interpreted.

Civil disobedience and Presente vigil led by SOA Watch (Nogales, AZ, November 2018), from the book Eclipse of Dreams


Read Ángeles Donoso Macaya's own words on the importance of her project Archives in Common: Migrant Practices/Knowledges/Memory two inaugural events "The Undocumented-Led Struggle for Freedom," a conversation with authors of Eclipse of Dreams, and “Brewing Memories,” an outdoors community workshop about medicinal plants, food justice, and indigenous food traditions:

"As Faculty Seminar Leader of Archives in Common, for me it is extremely significant to launch the project with this collective conversation. In both theory and practice, Archives in Common refuses the divisions created by institutions of higher education as colonial and imperial projects—above all, the position of the 'expert' and the notion that 'He' is authorized to produce and disseminate knowledge about determined 'subjects.' Moreover, the events and activities organized as part of the Archives in Common project seek to challenge the operations and framings deployed by 'the Archive,' also understood here as a colonial and imperial operation that produces 'knowledge' about certain individuals—in this particular case, immigrants and immigrant communities. Not only the authors of Eclipse of Dreams directly address some of the central issues I want to explore, learn more about, and discuss with the participants of the Archives in Common project, but also the book in and of itself can be seen as an 'archive' created 'in common:' through personal narratives, photographs, and quotes. Eclipse of Dreams offers counter-framings of immigrant and undocumented-led organizing, reflects critically about the struggle for racial and immigration liberation, formulates a collaborative methodology based on witnessing and accompanying, and, more importantly, weaves immigrant activists’ memories as a collective memory—this memory, active and dynamic, can help to activate others in joining the struggle for real liberation, justice, and dignity." -Ángeles Donoso Macaya



Direct action and civil disobedience blocking bus of undocumented immigrants headed to a nearby airport for deportation, (Chicago, IL, November 2013), from the book Eclipse of Dreams




Sat, October 3rd, 2020, 11:00 AM: Brewing Memories: A Free Workshop to Learn About Medicinal Herbs with La Morada Chef Carolina Saavedra



As part of the Archives in Common project, chef Carolina Saavedra will facilitate workshops, starting with "Brewing Memories," centered on food traditions, food justice, and urban farming.

This series will begin with an outdoor workshop on medicinal herbs at Brooke Park, a community garden in the South Bronx where Carolina grows many of the delicious chiles and herbs she and her mom, Natalia Mendez, use in their traditional recipes at La Morada restaurant. The workshop is called “Brewing Memories" because Carolina will invite us to “draw” a memory using herbs and honey, which we will then brew into our own tea! In this hands-on workshop, we will not only learn about different herbs we can easily grow at home (and perhaps use to brew more tea), but also about different knowledges and traditions linked to medicinal herbs.

Chef Carolina Saavedra of La Morada restaurant


Carolina Saavedra
is an educator at Stone Barns Center, a nonprofit organization working to bring about a healthy and sustainable food system. She is also the sous chef at La Morada restaurant, where the Saavedra family fights to ensure equality and social justice and to preserve their indigenous roots within the community of the South Bronx.

Click here for more information about this event, Carolina, and more.

View photos from the Brewing Memories workshop held on Saturday, October 3rd, at Brooke Park, facilitated by La Morada chef Carolina Saavedra. Photos by Cinthya Santoa-Briones.


La Morada co-owner Natalia Saavedra, talking about the importance of building community and memories through food and culinary traditions, and about the significance of centering healing in community during these times. Brewing Memories workshop, Saturday, October 3, at Brooke Park. Photo by Cinthya Santos-Briones.




Brewing Memories workshop held on Saturday, October 3, at Brooke Park. Photo by Cinthya Santos-Briones.




Professor Ángeles Donoso Macaya, chef Carolina Saavedra and chef Natalia Mendez at the Brewing Memories workshop held on Saturday, October 3, at Brooke Park. Photo by Cinthya Santos-Briones.



Brewing Memories workshop held on Saturday, October 3, at Brooke Park. Photo by Cinthya Santos-Briones.



Brewing Memories workshop held on Saturday, October 3, at Brooke Park. Photo by Cinthya Santos-Briones.



Brewing Memories workshop held on Saturday, October 3, at Brooke Park. Photo by Cinthya Santos-Briones.


Marco Saavedra, Antonio Saavedra and Natalia Mendez setting the fire to boil water. Brewing Memories workshop, Saturday, October 3, at Brooke Park. Photo by Cinthya Santos-Briones.


Brewing Memories workshop held on Saturday, October 3, at Brooke Park. Photo by Cinthya Santos-Briones.




A Review of Netfilx's "Immigration Nation" by Ángeles Donoso Macaya


A protest against ICE and deportation raids in Chicago, Illinois in 2019 (Photo: Charles Edward Miller/Flickr)


What's wrong about Netflix's Immigrant Nation? Plenty! Read Ángeles Donoso Macaya's critique which takes it apart and rebuts it point by point arguing the Netflix documentary adopts the dangerous viewpoint of ICE agents, portraying immigration raids and deportation proceedings as banal, bureaucratic procedures.

"The documentary shows us time and again the opinions and views of ICE officers. But this close view is not offered of the communities and activists resisting the racist practices of the state," and "According the point of view that the series reproduces, migrants are never the agents of their own destiny," writes Ángeles Donoso Macaya.

Read the review here on The North American Congress on Latin America report.

More About Ángeles Donoso Macaya

Photo by Paz Errazuriz.

Ángeles Donoso Macaya is an immigrant professor, researcher and organizer based in New York City. She is Associate Professor of Spanish at BMCC/CUNY. Her research centers on Latin American photography theory and history, counter-archival production, human rights activism, and feminisms. She is the author of The Insubordination of Photography: Documentary Practices under Chile’s Dictatorship (2020), co-editor of Latina/os of the East Coast: A Critical Reader (2015). Ángeles has been involved in sanctuary work in NYC since 2017 and is also member of colectiva somoslacélula, which creates video-essays about pressing political issues.

Participants

Seminar Faculty Leader

Images

The walls of La Morada restaurant are filled with photos depicting actions and paintings by Marco Saavedra, an immigration rights activist who helps run La Morada with his family. This photo centers a few of these images and a big banner that says "NO Deportaciones / NO Deportations".