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Higgins Center film series to begin Sept. 11

Author: Arts and Letters


The sixth annual Higgins Center Labor History Film Series at the University of Notre Dame will begin Sept. 11 (Monday) with the presentation of “Meeting Face to Face: The Iraq-U.S. Labor Solidarity Tour” at 4:30p.m. in the auditorium of the Hesburgh Center for International Studies.

A 27-minute documentary, “Meeting Face to Face” brings the often unheard voices of Iraqi working people into the debate about the war. The film also explores American workers’ movements for peace and social justice.

The series, sponsored by the University’s Higgins Labor Research Center, is free and open to the public. It will feature four more films throughout the academic year, all beginning at 4:30p.m. in the Hesburgh Center auditorium. They are:

  • Oct. 30 – “Harlan County, USA,” documents the 1973 coal miners’ strike against the Brookside Mine of the Eastover Mining Company in Harlan County, Kentucky, that included violent battles between gun-toting company thugs and picketing miners. Director Barbara Kopple offers historical background on the plight of the Kentucky miners.
  • Feb. 5 – “The Take,” tells the story of 30 unemployed auto parts workers in suburban Buenos Aires who refuse to leave their idle factory. Their simple act, the “take,” powerfully illustrates the issues of globalization. Armed only with slingshots, these workers face-off against bosses, bankers and an entire system that views their factory as nothing more than scrap metal for sale.
  • March 26 – “Farmingville,” award-winner at the Sundance Film Festival, the film presents a complex and emotionally-charged look into the nationwide controversy surrounding a suburban community, its expanding population ofillegal immigrants, and the attempted murder of two Mexican day laborers. “The New York Times” described it as a “primer for anyone who cares to better understand the usually unseen cost of America’s appetite for cheap labor.”
  • April 2 – “Is Wal-Mart Good for America?” This PBS “Frontline” special explores the relationship between American job losses and consumers’ insatiable desire for bargains. Through interviews with retail executives, product manufacturers, economists and trade experts, the film examines the growing controversy over how Wal-Mart conducts business and if it is changing the American economy.

The Higgins Labor Research Center is named for activist priest Monsignor George G. Higgins, a powerful voice for social justice in the workforce for the last half-century. The center provides a multidisciplinary view to the study of the economic and social consequences of different systems of work organization and the relationship between workers and management.

_*Contact:* Teresa Ghilarducci, Higgins Center director and professor of economics, 574-631-7581,

Originally published by Susan Guibert at on August 16, 2006.