Wendell Berry's Thoughts in the Presence of Fear (24, 25, 26, and 27)
Wendell Berry's "Thoughts in the Presence of Fear" ( 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, & 23)
Wendell Berry's Thoughts in the Presence of Fear (12,13,14,15,16, & 17)
Wendell Berry's "Thoughts In The Presence of Fear" (Thoughts 6-11)
When we can barely find the words to describe a moment or feeling, Wendell Berry is one of the national treasures we continue to lean on. In response to the events of September 11, 2001, Berry wrote the essay "Thoughts in the Presence of Fear". Appalshop filmmaker Herb E. Smith matched his words with scenes of Kentucky and interviewed Wendell years later about the process of writing in response to crisis and the essay's continued relevancy. We made this work publicly assessable for the first time last year. We invite you to reflect on five of these uniqur thoughts per day as we share them daily on our instagram until the end of this week.
Last year, Wendell also shared "Appalshop has made a substantial improvement in the fortune and fate of its region. No institution has done more to enhance the self-awareness and self-respect of Eastern Kentucky and all of Appalachia." He is still inspiring us all to use art in response to complicated times and crisis of all kinds.
In this episode of Mountain Talk on @wmmt88.7fm - we bring you an interview with Rashid Johnson. Johnson spoke with Benny Becker by phone from the Sussex 1 State Prison. He talks about unjust prison conditions he has experienced personally and witnessed in prisons across the United States. And he talks about organizing inside prisons, historically and today, through his discussion of the 2018 National Prison Strike, taking place from August 21st through September 9th 2018.
Listen for free on www.wmmt.org#august21#prisonstrike#prisonindustrialcomplex#thenewjimcrow
In March 2016 we received a donation of over 2000 photographic images that document 3 months in Harlan County, KY during the 1973-74 Brookside Mine coal strike against Eastover Mining Company. Donated by photographer Robert Gumpert, the 60-roll collection of 35mm b/w negatives captures the tension of the strike as well as the everyday lives of striking miners and their families, non-union miners, and residents of the county. Gumpert’s time in Harlan coincided with the making of Barbara Kopple’s award-winning documentary, Harlan County USA and his photographs provide several powerful still image counterpoints to scenes and events in the film.
Visit www.appalshoparchive.org for more.
Happy Birthday to two Appalachian Angels. Ray Hicks and Buell Kazee
Ray was the subject of the Appalshop Documentary "Fixin' to Tell About Jack" and both of these fellows have a release on June Appal Recordings
Nimrod Workman was a proud union miner who fought in the Battle of Blair Mountain. In the Appalshop film "Nimrod Workman: To Fit My Own Category," he reminisces and philosophizes in story and song about life inside and outside of the mines.
The film be can streamed in full for free at out website
This past Saturday was the anniversary of the beginning of the Battle of Blair Mountain 1921 that lasted until September 2nd the same year. Sunday was the anniversary of the ratification of the 19th amendment, which gave women the right to vote less than 100 years ago. Last week we shared a few films that told stories about labor uprisings in the mountains, this week we will keep with that message as we approach the celebration of Labor Day next Monday.
We will bring you faces and stories of fighters, the battles they have fought, songs and art they have inspired, exploring our archives to bring you stories you might have never heard before
So stay tuned, and if you want to celebrate one of your champions or share stories about the battles we face today, the comment section is all yours, friends and neighbors.
Keep on fighting the good fight!
Justice in the Coalfields
Directed by: Anne Lewis
Running Time: 57:00
Justice in the Coalfields demonstrates how current labor law has crippled the collective bargaining power of unions and weighed the scales of justice against working people. The documentary follows the United Mine Workers strike against the @Pittston Coal Company and explores the strike’s social, cultural, and economic impact on coalfield communities.
When the contract between the United Mine Workers of America and Pittston expired in February 1988, Pittston terminated the medical benefits of 1,500 pensioners, widows, and disabled miners. This violation of a long standing social contract ignited a community-wide sense of outrage. Justice in the Coalfields documents the events that followed in southwestern Virgina, the heart of the strike and a right-to-work state.
Hundreds of state troopers are seen escorting “replacement workers” through the picket lines. Union members, their families and friends are shown responding with mass civil disobedience resulting in over 4,000 arrests. State and federal judges reacted with injunctions and fined the UMWA more than $64 million. These events are given context through conversations with the rank and file. Additional perspectives are provided by a federal judge, a public interest lawyer, the coal company president, and the public affairs director of the National Right To Work Committee.
This video production was preserved by Appalshop Archive. To support the work of preserving and safeguarding Appalshop’s collections, please consider making a donation to Appalshop Archive.
buy or stream the film on our website at https://www.appalshop.org/media/justice-in-the-coalfields/
"Mine War on Blackberry Creek" Directed by: Anne Lewis 1986 Running Time: 27:00 Color
Mine War on Blackberry Creek reports on the long and bitter United Mine Workers of America strike in 1984 against A.T. Massey, America’s fourth largest coal company with corporate ties to apartheid South Africa. While strikebreakers work inside the mines and security men with guard dogs and cameras patrol the compound, miners on the picket lines detail the history of labor struggles in the region and their determination to hold out until victory.
Former CEO of the now-defunct Massey Energy, Don Blankenship, recently released after a year in prison for conspiring to violate federal mine safety standards and listed on AlterNet in 2006 as one of “the 13 scariest Americans,” addresses capitalism, social Darwinism, and the global economy, while Richard Trumka, who was Secretary-Treasurer and running for President of the AFL-CIO during filming, expresses union values.
Watch the full film here: https://vimeo.com/226773637#labor#union#coal#appalachia#film
Were there any Coalmining Women in your family tree? "Coalmining Women"
Director: Elizabeth Barret
Release Year: 1981
Running Time: 38:33
Original Format: 16mm Film
Color / B&W: color
Interviewed at home and on the job, women coal miners tell of the conditions that led them to seek employment in this traditionally male-dominated industry–and the problems they encountered once hired. Watching these women bolt mine roofs, shovel beltlines, haul rock dust, and build ventilation barriers leaves little doubt that they can, indeed, do the work. Proud of their accomplishments, the women also seem to bring a special understanding to the problems all miners face. Coalmining Women traces women's significant contributions to past coalfield struggles and the importance of their newer position as working miners. It is an excellent film for audiences interested in women in nontraditional roles, women's history, labor studies, and women as a force for social change.
Watch the entire film FREE on our website
"The United Mine Workers of America, 1970: A House Divided"
Director: Dan Mohn, J. Benjamin Zickafoose
Release Year: 1971 “If the rank and file membership don’t take over their local unions and elect officers got some guts, they might as well throw up their hands and quit, for they got nothin’ now, not like it was when we organized.”
‑Disabled UMWA miner
In 1970, W.A. (Tony) Boyle, was president of the United Mine Workers of America, under indictment for misuse of union funds and suspected of the murder of Jock Yablonski (the most outspoken advocate for reform of the union) and his family. UMWA 1970 intercuts a speech given by Boyle at a miners’ rally in Big Stone Gap, Virginia in the summer of 1970 with scenes at a mine and interviews with working and disabled miners. The film contrasts Boyle’s statements with those of the reform movement then growing among the union rank and file. Recommended for classes in U.S. and labor history.
This film was preserved by Appalshop Archive with funding from the National Film Preservation Foundation. To support the work of preserving and safeguarding Appalshop’s collections, please consider making a donation to Appalshop Archive.
Watch this Appalshop film here: https://www.appalshop.org/media/umwa-1970-a-house-divided/
Feel free to share any of your stories or photos that this reminds you of.