We’re building a cadre of community storytellers, journalists, documentarians, ethnographers, and artist-researchers to dive deep into the intersections of folklife and the climate crisis and produce stories for BorderLore, our monthly journal of culture & heritage.
How might stories from the US-Mexico borderlands contribute to intergenerational climate justice? How does documenting and facing loss help us collectively take stock of what remains as we develop strategies to protect culture and tradition? By documenting and sharing folklife stories, can we underscore inextricable connections between us, the land, culture, and nature to build equitable cultural and ecological futures?
Up to 15 participants will be selected to research and write/produce stories focused on the US Southwest (Arizona, California, New Mexico, Texas)and Northern Mexico. Participants will join a 2-day (online, weekend) training in early February 2023 and attend monthly peer sessions through June 2023. Participants will share stories, skills, and perspectives in a collaborative environment; hear from climate scientists, climate justice advocates, folklorists, and documentarians/ethnographers; participate in peer learning and support circles; and work with a developmental editor to create and finalize their story for publication. Participants will receive a stipend of $500 for their participation and publication in BorderLore. We particularly seek perspectives and voices from BIPOC communities.
Stories will address the intersections between folklife and climate, illuminating aspects of loss, adaptability, and/or regeneration. “Folklife” includes, but is not limited to, culture, heritage, traditional artforms, food & foodways, occupational folklife (work/labor), language & communication, beliefs and rituals, artifacts, and material culture. Stories might explore:
- LOSS: A particular folklife tradition, practice, or community that is being compromised by climate change. What is at stake? How is cultural resilience or resistance at play?
- ADAPTATION: How are communities and/or individuals using culture or traditional practices (or reinventing them) to imagine “fossil-fuel free” futures and connect human rights with the rights of all species?
- RELATIONSHIP: Where and how are Indigenous, traditional, or local land stewardship and sovereignty prioritizing relationships with human and non-human kin?
- OCCUPATIONAL FOLKLIFE: How are workers in a particular field either shifting traditions, leaning into long-standing modes of doing, or finding new value in their worklife knowledge and practices?
- And other ideas from your own experience, observation, or research.
Application Deadline: EXTENDED to DEC. 30, 2022
Notification: January 6, 2023
Initial Convening (on Zoom): Friday/Saturday in early February
Online application asks for:
- Your personal information
- A pitch of no more than 500 words sharing what story you want to tell, why it matters, how it addresses culture and climate, what format it will take (reported article, personal essay, photoessay, audio/video story, or other), and why you’re the best one to do it. (WordDoc or PDF)
- Your resume/CV or list of significant achievements relevant to the story you’d like to produce. (WordDoc or PDF)
- A work sample in the format that best matches the kind of story you are proposing:
- Writing sample: (up to 1500 words) published or unpublished. Submitted as a WordDoc or PDF or URL.
- Photography sample: Up to 10 images and a descriptive caption for each image. Ideally, this will be a single photo essay that tells a story about a particular subject. (JPGs: 1200 pixels on longest side, 72dpi; or a URL.
- Audio story sample: One audio story (~10-minutes). (.MP3, .WAV, or URL link)
- Video sample: One video story (up to 10 minutes). (.MOV, MP4, or URL link)
Questions? Contact Kimi Eisele at firstname.lastname@example.org
This program and BorderLore are made possible by the Southwestern Foundation for for Education and Historical Preservation, the Arizona Commission on the Arts, and the University of Arizona’s Southwest Center