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Who we are

We are the DARA Collective - Dr. Atallah's research 'lab' in the Clinical Psychology Program at UMass Boston. We are a group of students, faculty, postdoctoral fellows, and community activists engaging in research, activism, and healing justice practices in community with Indigenous and racialized groups primarily in Boston, Chile, and Palestine.

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Our DARA Collective Unity Principles:

  • We know that when seeds are sowed, when soil and roots are nurtured, life will keep growing and flourishing. We plant seeds together, and we reconnect to the joy of our collective harvest. We turn to our Indigenous lands - our rootedness and knowledges, we (re)turn to our waters, and we (re)turn to our trees.

  • We hold to be true that no research team, no single research project, and no single graduate program, can have all the relevant questions that lead to the types of changes needed to dismantle systems of oppression and remake our worlds with radical love and decolonial solidarities. 

  • We seek to follow leadership of Black Indigenous Womxn Queer Trans Working Class people in our communities.

  • We strive towards bringing our whole selves to our works and relationships, and we support each other in finding our unique voices in our journeys of becoming healers, storytellers, scientists, activists, clinicians, organizers, writers, teachers, learners, and more - people gathered together asking questions as enactments of psychic revolt and rebellion. 

  • We know that interlocking systems of oppression layer a multiplicity of suffering into our communities/minds/bodies/lands - and we recognize that one of the frontlines of struggle is the heart.  We strive to lead with healing, and we organize spaces with radical love as we work together. We understand healing as revolutionary when our healing is restorative and strengthening in our struggles against colonial violence, logics, and institutions. 

  • We encourage the mutual exchange of knowledges and skills. We bring our decolonial attitudes, questions, and courage to these exchanges. In doing so, we work for the collective dismantling of oppressive systems - for the collective becoming of the systems that we need - the collective dismantling of colonial logics and the collective becoming of the strategies that we need. We do not believe that we hold a special alternative or the 'one way'. We do not believe that we are the 'best' possible way. We make mistakes, and we get it wrong. We strive to practice humility, and we are open to continual change. We strive to value, and to practice, a multiplicity of ways.

  • We acknowledge the expectations of academia and of our clinical psychology program, and we constantly analyze our positionality as a radical research team. We support each other in engaging in the dances/tensions ahead while not losing sight of our work/purpose, our positionalities, and our praxis.

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