Wednesday, 30 September 2009


SUNDAY OCTOBER 25th at 5pm
At 56a Infoshop

HARLAN COUNTY USA, Barbara Kopple, 1976 (103m) + US labour short tbc

Barbara Kopple’s Academy Award–winning Harlan County USA unflinchingly documents a gruelling coal miners’ strike in a small Kentucky town. With unprecedented access, Kopple and her crew captured the miners’ sometimes violent struggles with strikebreakers, local police, and company thugs. Featuring a haunting soundtrack – with legendary country and bluegrass artists Hazel Dickens, Merle Travis, Sarah Gunning, and Florence Reece – the film is a heartbreaking record of the thirteen-month struggle between a community fighting to survive and a corporation dedicated to the bottom line.

Essay by Paul Arthur 'Harlan County USA: No Neutrals There',

A history of strikes at Harlan County from Labor Notes

From Cinemension blog - Harlan County USA trailer at this link:

"These people worked for pennies, no benefits, no indoor plumbing, no medical or dental insurance (most of their teeth are rotting and falling out) and their homes would be considered condemned in any "normal" city...Basically all these people are fighting for are their basic, human rights. Coal mining is definitely one of the most dangerous and toughest jobs imaginable. The working conditions are unsafe, atrocious, filthy and miserable".

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