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Showing posts from October, 2010

John Kennedy Toole and the Prytania Theatre

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John Kennedy Toole: the omega point, Joe Sanford’s award-winning documentary about the life of novelist John Kennedy Toole, was shown at the Prytania Theatre today as a Louisiana Feature entry in the 21st annual New Orleans Film Festival. The venue of this event was especially fitting, as the old single-screen movie house itself provides the setting of one of the funniest chapters in A Confederacy of Dunces, when our fictional leading man Ignatius Reilly attempts to attend an evening show at his neighborhood movie theatre in uptown New Orleans.

Today’s show was much calmer than that, as an appreciative audience enjoyed the colorful, poignant, and beautifully-crafted film. As explained in a question and answer session afterwards, the authenticity of the documentary was assured by the avoidance of editorial speculation. Even the comments by scholars interviewed in the film were almost entirely factual rather than judgmental. The result of this careful work was a thought-provoking…

Louisiana Research Collection opens major labor collection

The Louisiana Research Collection at Tulane University is pleased to announce the opening of the New Orleans Street Railway Union records. This collection contains the records of Union Division No. 194 of the Amalgamated Association of Street and Electric Railway Employees of America, established in 1892. Collection 26 traces the evolution of New Orleans Local No. 194 from 1902 – 1948. A large portion of the collection consists of correspondence, labor protests, worker contentions regarding pay, hours, administration, and strike relief, and administrative changes to the management of streetcars and streetcar lines.

The main focus of this collection, however, relates to the strikes enacted by Local No. 194. Strikes occurred in the years 1920, 1926, and 1929. The strike of 1929 had the longest duration, held the greatest impact, and was the result of contentions with the New Orleans Public Service Company and the Progressive Benevolent Association - a dual organization that Division No. …