Thursday, March 30, 2006

ZNH links

Students, here are three links concerning the Florida hurricane of 1928:

» A storm of memories (St. Petersburg Times)
1992 interview with a 78-year-old survivor

» Water World, by Michael Grunwald (New Republic)
Review of Eliot Kleinberg, Black Cloud: The Great Florida Hurricane of 1928, and Robert Mykle, Killer 'Cane: The Deadly Hurricane of 1928.

» The Florida Flood [...], by Eliot Kleinberg (History News Network, George Mason University)

An excerpt:

In 1928, thousands stayed in the interior. People asked many times, “Why didn’t they flee?” Now people are asking the same questions about New Orleans. The answer in both cases is the same. For many people, fleeing just wasn’t an option.

As in Katrina, many of the victims were poor -- in this case, poor migrant workers. While Katrina's targets had the option of an Interstate highway system, those along Lake Okeechobee had the option of following a winding 2-lane road north or taking the road to the coast -- the last place anyone would want to go with a hurricane bearing down. And the vast majority didn't have access to a car, much less own one.
And here's a link to Max Gordon's essay on the made-for-tv movie of Their Eyes Were Watching God (the best discussion of the movie that I've read):

» Watchers and Witnesses: Oprah, Zora, and James

An excerpt:
Oprah informs us that she believes Zora would "shout" if she could see what had been done with her novel. When I reached the end of the movie, two and a half hours later, I realize Oprah's introductory words are the truest experience of the evening. Yes, praise God, Zora would be shouting, but would it be a shout of glee that her work had finally been mass-produced and commercialized, or would it be a death-scream of betrayal, as all the juicy Africanisms of her book, all the tasty and trashy bits of black culture were sandblasted and filed down to a smooth dish of caramel custard?

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