top of page

My story started as an observer, a scholar sharing opinion in the media. Over time, I would be weaved into a story much larger than mine.
Here is but a glimpse of it

Detention and expulsion from Ecuador (2015-2018)

 On August 13, 2015, I was beaten and detained by Ecuador’s police forces during a national peaceful march against the indefinite reelection of President Rafael Correa. While spending the night in intensive care at the hospital under heavy police surveillance, the government revoked my work visa. By morning, the police detained me for showing “irregular immigration status.” After days in an immigrant detention center, I was forced to leave. My expulsion was a political vendetta for having denounced the pedophilia of the father of then vice-president Glás in the international press, which contributed to his detention. It was also a means by which to punish the work my partner and I led in defense of Indigenous nature defenders against extractive industries on their lands. For nearly three years, I was repeatedly denied a visa, as Ecuador’s government dismissed our Indigenous marriage as folklore. I presented my case at the European Parliament and the United Nations, whose bodies joined the chorus of demands asking Ecuador to allow for our family reunification by recognizing indigenous marriage.
For footage and context: CNN  - Front Lines Defender - Human Rights Watch

For selected media coverage: CNN espanol with live interview ; Carta de LASA a Rafael Correa, Tribuna El País (Espana);  El País (Uruguay); Le Monde (France);  14yMedio; Journalism in the Americas about IACHR (USA). In Brazil: O Globo, “Jornalista detida no Equador comenta prisao e visto cancelado”; BBC Brasil; Folha de Sao Paulo; Associação Brasileira de Imprensa; Estadão.

For supplemental testimony: petition that was presented to the judge;
Sobrevivientes Plan V;
Recognizing ancestral marriage at the UN OHCHR

Clara Linhart made a documentary film about this episode of my life, connecting my  2015 exile from Ecuador to the exile of our mothers back in the 1970s during Brazil’s military dictatorship. See the trailer or see film La Manuela (2017)


Community Weaving across Abya Yala

Spaces that formed me were also, as it turned out, spaces I found myself forming, weaving resistance across borders and connecting dreams in protest and politics.

- Somos Agua, Azuay
- Mujeres de AFEDES, Guatemala
- Bufete para Pueblos Indígenas, Guatemala
- CAOI Coordinadora Andina de Organizaciones Indigenas
- ECUARUNARI in Ecuador
- Legal Support

Community work spills over, including on the legal front, where supporting struggles brought us to present amicus curiae before courts.
Among the amicus we assisted:
Kimsakocha 2020, with Shunya D.Wade and Patrick Lee of the Indigenous Rights Advocacy group
Rio Blanco 2018, with Robin Broad and Pamela Martin
Sinangoe 2019?, with Yaku Perez
Ecocide and dispossession in the Ecuadorian Amazon, with Libertad Aguilar and Virginia Ryan

Presidential Campaign 2021
Our collective fight would ultimately hurtle many of us onto the national stage with Ecuador’s 2021 presidential election. The moment local struggles for self-determination emerged onto the political mainstream.

- The story of a campaign.
- The first of its kind to reject the extractive model completely.
- The first in Ecuador to openly claim the obvious: women’s right to decide over their bodies.
It is still being written, now with the formation of a new political movement called Somos Agua, a movement beyond the right versus left binary,  a movement that calls for an ecofeminist and post-extractivist ethos.

- Feminilist 100 in 2020
- Global Americans’s list of of Public Intellectuals in the Americas in 2018
- International studies association …?


Box 4.jpg
bottom of page