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The most important thing we can do is change . . . the way we’re talking about climate change. It’s not a left liberal partisan environmental problem. It’s a human issue, it’s a human crisis. It involves and connects every person on this planet.”—Xiuhtezcatl Martinez in Rolling Stone

Join us for an evening with Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, an eighteen-year-old indigenous climate activist, hip hop artist, and voice from the front lines of a global youth-led environmental movement. Currently the youth director of Earth Guardians, Martinez has been advocating for the environment since he was six years old. He is the winner of a United States Community Service Award from President Obama, the Peace First Prize, the Nickelodeon Halo Award, the Captain Planet Award, and the Children’s Climate Prize Award, and was the youngest of 24 national change-makers chosen to serve on President Obama’s youth council. In conjunction with the USC Fisher Museum exhibition Earthworks: Mapping the Anthropocene, Martinez will perform activist hip hop with his sister, Isa Roske; speak about his experiences as a youth activist, from winning moratoriums on fracking in his home state of Colorado to addressing the UN General Assembly; and talk with USC professor Manuel Pastor about global youth movements to—quite literally—save the world.

Xiuhtezcatl Martinez
 is an eighteen-year-old indigenous climate activist, hip hop artist, and voice from the front lines of a global youth-led environmental movement. He has spoken up for the environment from the Rio+20 summit on sustainable development to the UN General Assembly. He has worked locally to get pesticides out of parks, contain coal ash, and place moratoriums on fracking in his home state of Colorado, and he is a lead plaintiff in a youth-led lawsuit against the federal government for failing to protect the environment for future generations. In 2017, he released an album called Break Free and published his first book, We Rise: The Earth Guardians Guide to Building a Movement That Restores the Planet. (Official websiteFacebookInstagramTEDx TalkTwitterYouTube)

Manuel Pastor is a professor of sociology and American studies and ethnicity at USC. He directs the USC Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE) and the USC Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII) and is the inaugural holder of the Turpanjian Chair in Civil Society and Social Change at USC. Recognized for his work at the intersection of the academy and activism, he received the Wally Marks Changemaker of the Year Award from the Liberty Hill Foundation for his many research partnerships with social justice organizations. (State of ResistanceTwitter)

Isa Roske is a musician, activist, and Xiuhtezcatl Martinez’s sister. She is driven by her belief in music’s deeply transformative and unifying power to bring people together beyond the perceived differences we let divide us, and her music is informed by the work she has done as an activist with Earth Guardians. She has sung with the Isa and JoeAlan band, and has shared the stage with artists including Nahko Bear and Michael Franti.

Additional Links: 
Vice: “The 15-Year-Old Environmental Activist Suing the Government over Climate Change” (Video)
Xiuhtezcatl at the United Nations General Assembly on Climate Change (Video)
Xiuhtezcatl Martinez and Isa Roske perform with Jasi Sikora (Video)

Presented by USC Visions and Voices: The Arts and Humanities Initiative. Organized by the USC Fisher Museum of Art. Co-sponsored by USC El Centro Chicano and USC Environmental Student Assembly.