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Between Birmingham and Black Mountain in Kentucky: The Harlan Renaissance in Central Appalachia’s Coalfields
October 28, 2021 @ 3:00 pm
Dr. William Turner
The Harlan Renaissance is a heart touching, witty memoir by Dr. Turner, a Black Harlan County, Kentucky native and former Distinguished Professor of Black and Appalachian Studies at Berea College. In his book, Dr. Turner dispels the myth about the whiteness of Appalachia together with other creations, illusions, and untruths about the region. Growing up as the son and grandson of coal miners, Turner tells the story of how Black coal mining families built and maintained a supportive community structure in which people thrived despite the odds. He contends that the U.S. could draw lessons from their experience and believes that the nation has lost its sense of community to corrosive individualism and the cherishing self-seeking above common values, thereby imperiling democracy. Woods Lecture.