Understanding that white social scientists have profited off of “studying” Third World communities without the framework of understanding their oppression perpetuating “academic colonialism,” the Third World College sought to focus on the contemporary and historical contexts of these communities with the goal of developing students to help address the issues in their own communities.
The demand for autonomy and control of the college by Third World people was necessary to retain the flexibility and latitude required to develop a meaningful curriculum and course content. To allow the white majority to control the Third World College would result in its conformity to existing organizational and academic standards which have proven ineffective in fulfilling the pressing needs of our society. The role of the Third World College within the Third World communities, its political and economic orientation, and its definition of Third World people will serve to contract eternal domination over Third World people.
The demand for a Third World College rather than a department stemmed from an understanding of the necessary autonomy that Third World studies would require to maintain its radical framework and mission. Its control over admissions, curriculum, and structure would allow for self-determination in order to shape and reimagine education on its own terms, reclaiming the academia which has continued to perpetuate violence and oppression in Third World communities.