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Interventions

Communication Research and Practice

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Edited By Adrienne Shaw and D. Travers Scott

This volume brings together a range of papers that fruitfully engage with the theme of the 2017 Annual Conference of the International Communication Association, held in San Diego, California: Interventions. Here "intervention" points to a range of communication practices that engage with a political event, social phenomena, industrial or socio-cultural practice, in order to alter and disrupt events and the norms and practices that contribute to their occurrence.  Interventions prohibit events from proceeding in a "normal" course. Interventions approach or critique practices and phenomenon resulting from tensions or absences occurring in: events, structures, (institutional governmental, media industry), discourses, and socio-cultural and subcultural events. Intervention presents the opportunity to explore boundaries, assumptions and strategies that appear to be different or irreconcilable, viewing them instead as possibilities for productive engagements. Communication interventions—in both research and practice—insert insights from diverse voices, marginal positions, emerging organizational practices and digital technologies, to broaden and enrich dialogue. Interventions bring complex reframings to events and phenomenon. Interventions seek to alter a course and effect changed practices in a range of spheres: governmental and social institutions, cultural and nongovernmental groups; industry and organizational life, new media and digital spaces, socio-cultural environments, subcultural groups, health environments, affective and behavioral life, and in everyday life.

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12. When Borders Are the Intervention and Colonialism the Framework: Indigenous Migrants in the United States (Antonieta Mercado)

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12. When Borders Are the Intervention and Colonialism the Framework: Indigenous Migrants in the United States

ANTONIETA MERCADO

This chapter is from the opening plenary panel at the 2017 International Communication Association Conference in San Diego, “Border Interventions: The Interstices of Geopolitics, Identity and Violence.”

I would like to share with you in this plenary some reflections about my work documenting practices of citizenship and communication among Mexican indigenous migrant communities in the United States, and some further reflections about the questions that indigenous migrants raise for modern nation-states. This plenary session theme focuses upon academic interventions and borders, as the name of the conference conveys. In the context of our conference, however, interventions are about “inserting insights from diverse voices, marginal positions, emerging organizational practices and digital technologies to broaden and enrich dialogue” (ICA 2017 Website). This dialogical aspect of interventions is always hopeful in academic environments, especially when talking about indigenous knowledge and civic practices, since the term “interventions” might convey notions of top-down enterprises between the studier (academics) and the studied, often termed the “subjects.” I conceive my own work as more of an articulation or dialogue with the knowledge and experiences of others, rather than an intervention into their environment. In working with indigenous migrant communities organizing across borders, I have initiated a personal quest for awareness into my own ethnocentric structures of knowledge, called by some “internal colonialism” (Rivera-Cusicanqui, 2010). ← 201 | 202...

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