February 24, 2010

Center for Delta Studies to host conference

by Andrea Hahn

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- The Center for Delta Studies at Southern Illinois University Carbondale hosts an interdisciplinary conference March 4-6 at the Dunn-Richmond Economic Development Center on campus.

The overall focus of the conference is the story of the many migrations into the lower Mississippi and Ohio River valleys. Migration, in this context, includes an examination of how human migrations have shaped the region’s religious, cultural, political, economic and demographic history, the impact on the ecology of the area, and some of the other by-products of migration.

Media Advisory

Reporters, photographers and camera crews are welcome to document any part of the conference, including the dance and music workshops. Contact Jane Adams, director of the Center for Delta Studies, at 618/453-5019 or jadams@siu.edu.

A complete schedule of workshops, events and presentations is available at www.siuc.edu/%7edelta/conferences/FullProgram. Here are some highlights:

March 4

• Performance by Shirley Schuette of the Historic Arkansas Museum in Little Rock.

• Traditional dance workshop.

• Panel discussions highlighting migration patterns from pre-contact Native Americans to Irish immigrants and more.

March 5

• Keynote speaker Vytis Cubrinskas, from Vytautas Magnus University in Lithuania, “Transplanted Heritages and Long Distance Nationalism of the Lithuanian-Americans of the Late 1800s-Early 1900s.”

• Regional music workshop

• Panel discussions of migration, both of ethnic groups, and also of other organisms, including exotic animal species and disease organisms.

March 6

• Tours of the Cache River Wetlands and the Shawnee Hills Wine Trail.

The Delta area corresponds to the Delta Regional Authority as recognized by the federal government, and includes areas of Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee.

Registration for the conference is $50 and includes all events, including the tours. For registration information, contact Kayeleigh Sharp at sharpka@siu.edu.