about Anjali

SFO Shutdown photo

successfully shutting down SFO’s international terminal to stop the ‘Muslim Ban’

photograph by Sunshine Velasco of Survival Media Agency (w/ permission)

Founder & Teacher

Anjali Lynn Nath Upadhyay M.A.² is academically trained as a political scientist, philosopher, and educator. She holds an M.A. degree in Political Science from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa with specializations in Indigenous Politics (the only program of its kind in the US) & Political Theory & a Graduate Certificate in International Cultural Studies (the only Cultural Studies graduate program in the US that explicitly teaches scholarship from the Global South & not mostly the Western canon). She also holds an M.A. degree from the oldest Women’s Studies Department in the US (at San Diego State University) with concentrations in feminist pedagogies, epistemologies, and gender and militarization. She double-majored in Women’s Studies and Political Science with a minor in Philosophy at California State University at Fullerton. From 2010-2014, she was a Fellow at the East-West Center in Honolulu. Anjali’s longstanding curiosities focus on learning and teaching as practices of liberation.

Her community engagement and activism have encompassed a wide range of areas, including but not limited to graduate student collective bargaining, prison abolition, Earth defense, guerrilla theater, anti-war organizing, LGBTTIQQ2SA advocacy, & popular education on transformative justice approaches to intimate partner violence.

She is honored to have lived, worked, studied, and/or spent time in Egypt, Bangladesh, Nepal, India, Indonesia, Cambodia, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, Taiwan, Aotearoa, Australia, the Commonweath of Dominica, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Mexico, Canada, the USA, Ireland, the UK, Portugal, Spain, the Czech Republic, & Germany.

A former lifeguard and SCUBA Rescue Diver, Anjali is passionate about defending the Earth’s oceans & all the life contained therein. With deep diving, night diving, and enriched air certifications, she seriously digs holding space for folks to dive deeply into the unknown and conspire for consciousness.

Most importantly, she is stewarding the miraculous traditions of her ancestors, largely Naths & Upadhyays, who birthed some of the most inspired embodiments of liberation, wisdom, and enlightenment the world has ever known. (Did you know that the Naths were some of the founders of yoga and the first gurus to teach our tradition?) Her family has also sometimes supported Hindu fundamentalism, casteism, & Islamophia, which she’s unequivocally committed to putting her life on the line to dismantle until they’re abolished. Such is the truthful calling of clearing intergenerational karma & devoting our gifts to getting free for all of us who come from lineages that passed on both brilliant and oppressive practices.

Upon invitation, she has taught courses in the Department of Women’s Studies at San Diego State University, the Department of Political Science at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, & the Graduate Department of Philosophy & Religion at California Institute of Integral Studies.

Upon invitation, Anjali has presented her original research at:

For more information, please see Anjali’s resume:

Anjali Nath Upadhyay CV 2018

If you’re curious about working together, please reach out liberationspring@gmail.com!

One of our Liberations Spring cohort recently spoke during a sesh of creating a brave space. In our collective, we do just that: work in solidarity to create a brave space, at once interrogating, transgressing, and transcending dominant learning paradigms, putting theory into practice, and turning conventional academic practice on its head—all in third-space style.

Anjali is (re)born to teach. Her proclivity for facilitating discussion, her gift for carefully crafting curricula, her profound knack for connecting students with a staggering array of spot-on resources, and her obvious love of conspiring to unlearn is immense. In both one-on-one meetings and in our weekly group gatherings, she supports, inspires, and cuts to it: if we want to myth make, reimagine what is possible, dream, think-feel, nourish ourselves and one another, and get down, this work is not luxury—it’s necessity. –Kris Grossman