CONTACT: MARY GERAGHTY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0011; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Feb. 9, 2000
UI to host seminar on 'Labor and the Cold War'
IOWA CITY, Iowa The Cold War had significant and lasting effects
on the American workforce and the American labor movement. Workers with unpopular
political views faced persecution, and labor unions were seen as mechanisms
for spreading communist propaganda. Anyone interested in hearing about recent
research on Cold War-era labor issues is invited to attend "Labor and
the Cold War," a seminar sponsored by the Center for Recent United States
History (CRUSH) on Saturday, Feb. 19. The seminar will be from 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
in the second floor conference room of the University of Iowa Main Library.
Following the seminar will be a 7 p.m. screening and discussion of the film
"The Salt of the Earth," and its suppression in the 1950s. The film,
released in 1954, deals with the efforts of Mexican-American zinc miners in
New Mexico to battle against the exploitative practices of their employer,
Delaware Zinc, Inc. Ethnic discrimination and unsafe working conditions lead
the Mexican miners to declare a strike, with the support of their union. The
filmmakers were hounded by the FBI, CIA and House un-American Activities Committee,
who made great efforts to suppress the film. Once the film was released, many
theaters refused to show it.
James Lorence of the University of Wisconsin--Marathon County, will lead
the discussion of the film and will show videotaped excerpts of interviews
with strike participants, which he drew on for his new book, "The Suppression
of The Salt of the Earth" (University of New Mexico Press, 1999).
CRUSH is a consortium of the UI department of history, the UI Libraries,
the State Historical Society of Iowa, the Hoover Library and Museum and the
National Park Service. It has been in existence since the 1970s and holds
periodic conferences, seminars and workshops for historians, librarians, archivists
and the general public on topics in 20th century U.S. history.
This seminar is open to the public, but advance registration is required.
Those who register will receive copies of the nine scholarly papers to be
discussed throughout the day. The cost of the seminar is $20, which includes
lunch and refreshments in addition to the seminar materials.
Deadline for registration is Monday, Feb. 14, and registration checks made
payable to Center for Recent United States History (CRUSH) should be mailed
to Department of History, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242. For more
information call: 319-335-2299.