Earlier this week I caught wind of a new organization (thanks to Mary B.) called “The Coalition for Ozark Living Traditions” (COLT). According to its mission statement, COLT is a not-for-profit organization established to support individuals and organizations that participate in and support the cultural traditions and traditional arts of the Ozarks region.
You can check out their yahoo group here:
At any rate…at first blush I thought this group might fall into the “defenders of the pure, unspoiled Ozarks” category (those of you familiar with my work know that my dissertation attempts to deconstruct both negative and positive stereotypes about the history of the Ozarks)…but I just got this notice about a “Talking Ozarks Symposium” which looks like it may take a more nuanced view of Ozark history. I mean, just admitting that there has been Ozark In-Migrations (in the plural) is a step toward anti-essentializing the region.
Talking Ozarks Symposium Update
Co-sponsored by C.O.L.T. (the Coalition for Ozark Living Traditions) and the Arkansas Folklife Program, the 2006 Talking Ozarks Symposium will take place September 8-9 in Pocahontas, AR. The theme for this year’s event will be Ozarks In-migration. We invite talks, papers, panels, and presentations on aspects of cultural change to the Ozarks region as a result of new populations. Topics may be historical or contemporary and may examine both cultural and environmental aspects of population additions to the Ozarks. For more information and/or submissions contact either Rachel Reynolds (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Michael Luster (email@example.com) PO Box 102 Mammoth Spring, AR 72554. The Arkansas Folklife Program is supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arkansas State University and the Arkansas Department of Heritage. The Coalition for Ozark Living Traditions is a not-for-profit organization.