Inside Appalachia

courtesy Kaitlen Whitt

How do the wordsmiths of today describe Appalachians? The people who don't let a day go by without putting down on paper a song, or a rhyme, or a tale that they just had to get off their chest? What kind of worlds do they create in their writings?

 

You’re probably well aware that in places like southern West Virginia, it’s really tough right now for coal miners, their families and many communities. So many miners have been laid off these past few years, and those who have a job don’t have a lot of hope that they will be able to keep what they have for much longer.

Jesse Anderson

Across the country, there’s been sweeping change in the last few years in the way the law treats gay people - and how society in general feels about gay relationships. Here in Appalachia, the acceptance of this change has been mixed.

On West Virginia Morning, Clark Davis begins a look at the teams as college football season kicks on this weekend.  And Jessica Lilly, the host of Inside Appalachia talks with Mountain Stage host and artistic director Larry Groce about Appalachian music…along with our Mountain Stage song of the week.  That’s on West Virginia Morning from West Virginia Public Broadcasting – telling West Virginia’s story.

It's Hip to be Appalachian

Sep 3, 2015

On West Virginia Morning, Roxy Todd reports that there’s a revival going on.  Appalachian culture is becoming hip.  Top chefs are serving down home food they call “Appalachian cuisine.”  The story on West Virginia Morning from West Virginia Public Broadcasting – telling West Virginia’s story.

The Revivalist: Word From the Appalachian South

Appalachian culture is becoming pretty hip, says Mark Lynn Ferguson, the creator of a blog called The Revivalist: Word From the Appalachian South. He called it the Revivalist because he’s seeing a revival of interest in Appalachian culture - and he also wants to help introduce the joys of life in Appalachia to more people. "I think the cultural influence outside the mountains has never been bigger," said Ferguson.

West Virginia University, Douglas Arbogast

This time of year, it’s the perfect temperature for people to gather on their back deck, maybe over some drinks, to play music. So for this week's episode of Inside Appalachia, Jessica Lilly and Roxy Todd spent some time uncovering a few, shall we say, mysteries behind Appalachian music. We’ll also hear how young people are reviving this old time music.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this week's episode of the podcast Us & Them, producer Trey Key looks at the evolution of textbooks in the U.S. and the controversies in both Kanawha County and Texas that have shaped the textbooks students read in school.

Inside Appalachia focuses on the out-migration of young people from West Virginia and Appalachia in general, a move that often leaves Appalachian natives homesick for their roots. 

Husband and wife due Shovels and Rope play "Evil," this week's Mountain Stage Song of the Week.

Daniel Walker/WVPB

Have you ever heard of a pepperoni roll? If you haven’t, then you’re not from West Virginia.

Creating Art Can Be a Lonely Business

Aug 14, 2015

On West Virginia Morning, Liz McCormick reports from the Eastern Panhandle where a group of artists get together to critique each other’s work.  Also, singer-songwriter Jill Barber has our Mountain Stage Song of the Week.  That’s on West Virginia Morning from West Virginia Public Broadcasting – telling West Virginia’s story.


Daniel Walker/WVPB

This week, Inside Appalachia is featuring some incredible stories about dogs that help people heal. Like Paca, who helps children overcome emotional trauma and even helps encourage them to read. And we'll travel to a special cemetery, reserved only for coonhound dogs.

Bruce Gilden, Vice

In a recent interview, photographer Bruce Gilden said, “…you have to be sneaky to get the picture…” He said other things about respecting his subjects, his need to get very close and that only by veering into abstraction could he get closer.

Malcolm Wilson/ Humans of Central Appalachia / Humans of Central Appalachia

What happens when strangers with cameras go to Appalachia? It’s a complicated topic that many Appalachians have strong feelings about.

On West Virginia Morning, Beth Vorhees talks with Inside Appalachia host Jessica Lilly about this week’s episode featuring a discussion about outsiders taking pictures in Appalachia.  And we visit the Augusta Heritage Center in Elkins where it’s bluegrass music week.  These stories on West Virginia Morning from West Virginia Public Radio news – telling West Virginia’s story.


Inside Appalachia Preview: Outsiders Looking In

Jul 30, 2015

Producer/Host Jessica Lilly and producer Roxy Todd have pulled together a lot of voices on the subject of outsiders photographing Appalachians so we can get a better understanding of the question of who gets to tell our stories as Appalachians, why we are asking that question to begin with and hearing from folks who suggest it's not necessary to ask the question at all.


It can be pretty tough to be a young person in Appalachia. There’s a lot of love for our region in the younger generation, too. So some younger people are making their own opportunities. Hear from people in their teens and 20s who are creating art and music here and listen to their ideas and dreams for Appalachia.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On West Virginia Morning, two stories about reflections on the Confederate flag.  Reporter Jessica Lilly attended a high school in Mullens, Wyoming County.  The school’s mascot was a Rebel and the rebel flag was a school symbol.  And Roxy Todd talks with a family of three generations in Elkins who share their thoughts about the flag.  These stories on West Virginia Morning from West Virginia Public Broadcasting, telling West Virginia’s story.


Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Shepherdstown is a little place with a lot of history. Harpers Ferry and the Antietam battlefield are literally down the road. The tiny downtown has Civil War era brick buildings filled with mom n’ pop restaurants and shops. But there’s a kind of counterculture side to the town, too.

Locals can be seen playing live music on the street with a cup of coffee or tea in hand - maybe even wearing tie-dye. And there’s a big demand for local, organic foods including a local favorite - a restaurant called Mellow Moods.

This week, Inside Appalachia is hearing from people across the region, sharing their views about the Confederate Battle Flag.

Christine Cover

Appalachia has certainly been stereotyped by many people in the media. But not all storytellers are the same, and the stories that are told about Appalachia are often complicated with layers of misunderstandings. 

It takes time, compassion and perhaps an inside perspective to delve deep and do justice to the people affected by the story. So much of this type of work- that which is reshaping how Appalachia is portrayed- is being rendered by women in the media.

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