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Joe Hill Road Show: A Musical History of the Wobblies & the Early U.S. Labor Movement

Wednesday, March 14, 2018,
  • Location: Divinity School, Reading Room
  • Room: 124

Joe Hill wrote music to fan the flames of discontent. His songs became anthems of the Industrial Workers of the World labor union–the “Wobblies”–who sought to form One Big Union by organizing all workers across the barriers of skill, nationality, color, and gender.

Joe Hill was executed by a Utah firing squad in 1915 for a murder he probably didn’t commit. But he lives on in the songs he wrote and his influence on generations of social and political protest music, from Woody Guthrie to Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Rage Against the Machine, and beyond.

Learn the story of Joe Hill and the early U.S. labor movement through music, spoken word, and historical images, courtesy of Nashville’s own Shelby Bottom Duo, followed by brief comments and Q&A by a panel of Vanderbilt faculty that includes Professor of History Jeff Cowie and Professor of Sociology Larry Isaac.

Light refreshments will be served. The event is free and open to the public. Closest parking is Wesley Place Garage.

Event sponsored by Vanderbilt Sociology. Special thanks to the Tennessee Arts Commission.