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Chronotopic Figurations of Coal Mining at Blair Mountain

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title
Chronotopic Figurations of Coal Mining at Blair Mountain
author
Bourland, Davis
abstract
Blair Mountain, West Virginia, site of both the largest labor insurrection since the Civil War and, more recently, contested terrain for mountaintop removal mining, is an exemplar of Appalachia coal mining's uniquely American tropes. In 1921, roughly 8,000 miners were held up at Blair as they marched south to Logan to protest labor conditions and petition for the right to unionize southern coalfields. Currently, citizens of Blair are fighting to protect the mountain from a coal extraction process commonly known as mountaintop removal mining (MTR). In 1921, striking miners, having returned from World War I, displayed an oft-told story about American labor strife and the struggle for unionization. Current activists engage in a less publicly understood environmental dispute with coal corporations and government officials over the risks associated with mining methods. While the present debate has shifted paradigmatically from that of the past (i.e., from a labor to an environmental dispute), the cultural and social milieu in Appalachia has not. For West Virginians invested in the future of Blair Mountain, its cultural and political histories have been "thrust back into remembrance" (Nida and Adkins 14). For opponents of MTR, Blair Mountain's history is simultaneously present and dangerously close to extinction.
subject
Appropriation
Chronotope
Folk Song
Judy Bonds
Mother Jones
Rhetoric of Coal Mining
contributor
Zulick, Margaret (committee chair)
Llewellyn, John (committee member)
Gillespie, Michele (committee member)
date
2011-07-14T20:35:27Z (accessioned)
2011-07-14T20:35:27Z (available)
2011 (issued)
degree
Communication (discipline)
identifier
http://hdl.handle.net/10339/33445 (uri)
language
en (iso)
publisher
Wake Forest University
type
Thesis

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