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Call for Proposals Issued for 2018 Johnny Cash Heritage Festival


JONESBORO – A call for proposals has been issued by Arkansas State University Heritage Sites and The Historic Dyess Colony: Johnny Cash Boyhood Home for a symposium as part of the 2018 Johnny Cash Heritage Festival, Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 18-20, in Dyess.

The theme for the festival is “The Ties that Bind.” Presentations that appeal to general audiences, as well as academic participants, are especially welcome. Research and artistic presentations that incorporate music, images, film, computer graphics and other interactive elements will be given first preference.

“When families from throughout Arkansas relocated to the Dyess Colony in the 1930s seeking a fresh start, they formed strong connections in their new community,” stated Dr. Adam Long, director of the festival symposium.

“Ties of friendship and family kept the community together, and through music and culture, the community tied itself to the outside world. These ties continue to bind successive generations, strengthened by the preservation of the Historic Dyess Colony and the Johnny Cash Boyhood Home.”

Topics might include (but are not limited to):

  • Ties of History – factors such as the Great Depression, the New Deal and agricultural programs that brought colonists together. 

  • Dyess in Its Time and Place – the cultural touchstones that tied Dyess to other communities or to the 1930s-40s. 

  • Ties of Influence – impact of earlier artists or contemporaries on Johnny Cash, or the influence of Johnny Cash on contemporaries or later artists. 

  • Preserving the Ties – preservation of New Deal colonies or the stories of colonists through restoration projects, oral histories, museums, etc. 

The deadline for proposals is Friday, June 29. An abstract of 150 words as well as a brief biography, two-page curriculum vitae and technology needs should be submitted to adamlong@AState.edu.

The Johnny Cash Heritage Festival will feature other activities in addition to the academic panels, including free regional music concerts and a world-class ticketed concert on Saturday afternoon. Presenters are invited to participate in the weekend’s other activities. For more information, check JohnnyCashHeritageFestival.com.

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