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Mtn. Talk: Ethical Appalachian Reporting

Mtn. Talk: Ethical Appalachian Reporting

 

Breakout groups discuss positive, negative, and neutral coverage of Central Appalachia by regional and national media makers and institutions. Photo by Anna Simonton.

In this episode we bring you voices and ideas from a recent event we held here at the Appalshop.  On March 31st, WMMT and Scalawag Magazine co-hosted a day long event focused on Ethical Appalachian Reporting, followed by a screening of Appalshop film Stranger With A Camera and a Q&A with author Elizabeth Catte.  The event was made possible through support from the PEN America Press Freedom Incentive Fund.

Full group brainstorming session of do’s and don’ts for national media makers covering our region. Photo by Anna Simonton

Scalawag is a young magazine working to spark critical conversations about the many Souths where we live, love, and struggle. And to amplify the voices of activists, artists, and writers who reckon with Southern realities as they are, rather than as they seem to be.

For this event, we wanted to bring people together to talk about how Appalachia is portrayed in regional and national media, to map individuals and organizations telling complex nuanced stories about our region, and to track those that consistently paint pictures of our mountain homes that flatten us into a homogenous and simple place.  At the end of the discussion we brainstormed some to dos and not-to-dos for media makers covering the region.

Breakout groups discuss positive, negative, and neutral coverage of Central Appalachia by regional and national media makers and institutions. Photo by Anna Simonton.

 

About 35 people attended the discussion at Appalshop’s Boone Youth Drop in Center.  After the discussion and lunch, we walked across the street to the Appalshop theater where we watched Stranger With A Camera directed by Elizabeth Barrett which screened at the Sundance Film Festival.  Directly afterward’s author and historian Elizabeth Catte read from her new book “What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia” before answering audience questions.

 

Elizabeth Catte answering audience questions about her book “What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia.” Appalshop’s Development Director Ada Smith moderates. Photo by Tanya Turner.

 

In this episode you’ll hear segments of the community discussion and Catte’s reading and Q&A.

Music on this episode comes from Appalshop’s own June Appal recording of Brett Ratliff with a tune called Forked Deer from his 2008 Album Cold Icy Mountain.

This event was made possible through support from the PEN America Press Freedom Incentive Fund.

 

 

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