Thursday, September 10, 2009
Las Vegas and Black Mountain Institue
Arrived in Las Vegas to meet the other fellows at the Black Mountain Institute. The Institute was founded in 2006 to "provide an environment where thinkers and writers from around the world can fight against entrenched perspectives, whatever their political or cultural source." The fellows have backgrounds in journalism, fiction, non-fiction and playwriting. This year the fellows seem to come from each category. Cristina Garcia ("Dreaming in Cuban") is the fiction writer and teaching fellow. (In the small world department she and I each went to the same graduate school in international studies. "We are black sheep" she said.) Lavonne Mueller is a playwright of international renown and is completing the third play in a trilogy called "Women in War" and is about the experience of the comfort women in Japan. Timothy O'Grady is a fiction writer who holds both an Irish and American passport and is working on a novel about a retired IRA sniper. And I am the nonfiction writer working on coal, climate change, and the long term effects of stripmining on the Indian reservations of northern Arizona. This project goes back to work I did in Congress in the 1970s. For more information look at the Black Mountain Instiute on the University of Nevada website.