CIRCLES | Radical-Reading Group on Colonization, Decolonization, and Liberation

Johanna James co-organizer of the Womanist Working Collective and Mabel Negrete (CNS) of Indigenous 215; both of whom collaborate within the community building project, Philadelphia Assembled (PHLA), invite you to participate in a workshop initiative called “CIRCLES” hosted by the PHLA: Mobile Futures Institute (MFI) at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

PHLA is a project that seeks to amplify stories of resilience, resistance and radical community building through the personal and collective narratives that make up Philadelphia’s changing urban fabric. The MFI is a retrofitted shuttle bus parked outside of the museum that serves as a meeting place, classroom, workshop, library and mobile installation. Its main purpose is to explore varying notions of the city’s futures, ranging from the decolonization of Turtle Island to environmental racism and economic justice.

One way in which we seek to explore narratives of the future is through acknowledging and understanding the very real impact external forces have on our lives, livelihoods and quality of life. Thus, “CIRCLES” seeks to be a radical-workshop that unapologetically holds space for healing and emotional development surrounding cultural, historical and identity issues resulting from colonization. With intentionality, we will create open dialogue that fosters solidarity among Indigenous peoples of the Americas and Black communities living in the city and build new practices while honoring the work of our ancestors and past movements of liberation.

CIRCLES will be organized into two phases. The first phase is a Study Circle where we explore text from Colonization and Decolonization – A Manual for Indigenous Liberation in the 21st Century. In the second phase, the study group will convene for a big closing gathering inside the PHLA Sanctuary Dome. Our goal is to raise solidarity between Indigenous Peoples of the Americas and Black communities of the Diaspora that speak specifically to our need for decolonization and reconstruction.