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''Appalachian Heritage'' Features the Late Don West

On Nov. 7, Jeff Biggers, a notable writer, editor, journalist and critic read excerpts from “No Lonesome Road,” a compilation of poems and prose by the late Don West, an Appalachian civil rights activist. Biggers’ reading was in celebration of the latest issue of Appalachian Heritage, which showcases West as its featured author.

Jeff Biggers

< < Listen to Jeff Biggers' reading on our podcast channel. > >

Don West was a preacher, historian, and folk-music revivalist to name a few of his accomplishments; however, he is best known as an educator. West co-founded the Myles Horton Highlander Folk School and later founded his own school—Appalachian South Folklife Center—with the help of his wife Connie West. Mr. West often found himself on the opposite side of the law for his stance for justice. He was not afraid to defend the defenseless, and protest injustice.

Jeff Biggers was born in Ohio and raised in Illinois and Arizona. He travelled to New York City to attend Hunter College. He has also studied in Berkley, California at the University of California, Columbia University, and the University of Arizona. Mr. Biggers has many career titles such as writer, radio correspondent and community organizer. The books he has written include "The United States of Appalachia" and “In the Sierra Madre.” He co-edited “No Lonesome Road” with George Brosi, the editor of Appalachian Heritage magazine.

In the words of Luis Urrea, “Jeff Biggers has the keenest eye in the business, and he has a fine luminous voice to tell you what he has seen. Biggers manages to write like a poet, a historian, a naturalist and an adventurer.”

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