*Tokenized, Romanticized, and Professionalized*: Establishing the Significance and Urgency of Decolonizing the University

Ruben Elias Canedo Sanchez, UC Berkeley

For this dialogue, I will combine: (a) Zeus Leonardo’s work on the neo-abolition of whiteness, (b) Gloria Anzaldua’s mestiza consciousness, (c) statistics on the representation of students of color, first-generation, and low-income students at UC Berkeley from 1996 to present, and (d) my experiences in Student Initiated Spaces and Student Support Services.¬† Furthermore, I will critique current re-constructionist neo-liberal efforts, that are utilizing the banner of “diversity.” I will present how they have negative disproportionate effects on the spaces of underrepresented communities at UC Berkeley. By the end of this presentation, I hope to provide enough questions, alternative critical analyses, and arguments to establish the significance and urgency that decolonizing institutions of higher education through theory, pedagogy, and praxis has.