Diandra Marizet is a conscious curator, community builder, writer, and founding member of Intersectional Environmentalist. Diandra uses her work to elevate intersectional sustainability through the lens of social impact and culture. With a background in fashion and community building, Diandra uses her ongoing study to unpack the importance of cultural preservation and eco-feminism. We love following Diandra and learning about all things intersectional environmentalism.
Please introduce yourself! Who are you and what are you up to RIGHT now?
I’m Diandra (she/her) calling in from Akokisa land, otherwise known as The Woodlands, TX. I am a conscious curator, community builder, writer, and founding member of Intersectional Environmentalist, where I spearhead Business Ops + lead the development of our resource House. I have traditionally used my work to elevate sustainability through the lens of fashion, social impact, and culture.
How did your journey with climate activism begin?
I think we’re all primed as kids to care about the planet when we learn about animals and food, but when I began working in fashion, I was becoming more aware of the role artisanal craft played in retail. I took it upon myself to learn more about artisans and the struggles they face in creating the goods we buy. Along the way, I found myself learning from incredible folks like Aditi Mayer, Isaias Hernandez, Ibada Wadud, and many other incredible folks in my community that bolstered my ability to connect dots across so many different topics from fashion to beauty to agriculture that exploit people for profit and power. Because of my experiences throughout my career and the incredible knowledge pouring out of my community, I became more committed to unlearning what capitalism has taught us and began working alongside my community to create new normals that help us truly support people and the planet.
How do you see your role within your platform and community? What is your intention for your platform?
Ultimately my role is to be one of the many stewards of stories within our online community that values and cherishes all the wisdom being shared within our online ecosystem. There have been so many incredible and under-amplified incredible folks who have been doing the work to
research, to empower, and to heal our communities for so long, and many of us learned the hard way that sustainable influencers of the world aren’t just white women with mason jars.
So I hope that through amplification and education, that we can help more young folks across the country see themselves reflected in the environmental movement, and help them connect with people telling the stories and building the resources and solutions that are going to empower them.
Tell us about your involvement with Intersectional Environmentalist and the values that your organization represent!
I’m the co-founder of IE, and we created this platform to amplify unheard voices in the environmental movement. This community has been years in the making and before IE was even launched, this community has helped each other beautifully unpack the importance of community agency over local ecological solutions because so much of our cultures have been informed by reciprocal relationships with the earth. I’ve come to appreciate that when we lose a cultural lens, we also lose vital ways of looking at the world. IE is now a space where we can amplify unheard voices and celebrate their ancestry, wisdom culture and joy.
What are some practices that you're exploring in your own personal life as a climate activist?
Growing up in America, I was taught a skewed version of my own culture because of problematic motivations to assimilate into white culture. Now I love delving back into my heritage from the eyes of my people to appreciate all the beautiful ways Mexicans have thrived on protected land, and thrived in synergy with mama earth.
What are three books, articles or podcasts that you'd recommend for people to learn more about climate or IE?
Intersectional Theory was coined by Kimberle Crenshaw and she launched a podcast called “Intersectionality Matters”, which has been a great podcast to root many of our early learnings of intersectionality in.
IE also launched a podcast, called “Dismantled” to continue highlighting the voices in our community who have been doing this work for years and have often experienced being dismissed for centering unheard voices in the environmental movement and to share some behind the scenes realness around what it’s been like to reclaim space and make our voices heard.
I am such a huge fan of Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and her new book “All We Can Save”, which highlights incredible stories that shed light on how we can re-imagine a future when it is led by feminist climate leaders.
Are there some brands or items that you personally love in the sustainability space?
If my wardrobe was exclusively Selva Nega and Back Beat Co. for the rest of my life, I’d die a happy and stylish death. I love a wardrobe that embraces culture and style in a timeless way and all of my favorite pieces come from these two apparel brands.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
If this economy would get things right for student life , I see myself maybe going back to school to dedicate more time to unpacking my Mexican heritage and Mesoamerican studies to gain a deeper knowledge of the contributions that my people have made to environmentalism, art, literature, policy and more. It’s wonderful to see yourself reflected in these spaces and when you get deeper in, you realize it’s wonderful because of the unique perspectives and solutions that were drawn out of your culture that you get to feel connected to.
If there was one thing you wanted people to know about climate, what would it be?
If there’s one thing I want folks to know, it's that we aren’t all physically experiencing or seeing that the climate crisis is here now simply because we aren’t the most vulnerable to its consequences. The Climate crisis is here now and it’s already impacting those who are most vulnerable to the harmful systems we’ve put in place. It’s time to amplify unheard voices and support solutions that are centered around those who need our help most.