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Rural Matters

Apr 2, 2021

Michelle chats with several speakers from the Rural Assembly Everywhere conference, taking place April 20-21 with the theme of The Road to Repair. The speakers include Cariel Klein and Travis Coe from the Double Edge Theatre Company and Margaret Renkl, author of Late Migrations: A Natural History of Love and Loss and the upcoming Graceland, at Last: And Other Essays from The New York Times. Klein and Coe discuss the intersection of artistic and justice-focused work. Klein describes how Double Edge Theatre has worked to try to reverse the feelings of isolation many have felt during the pandemic through their socially-distanced shows. Coe describes how experiencing unfamiliar stories through art can be a transformative experience for rural audiences. Renkl discusses the nuanced portrait of the South presented in her upcoming book. She also says that rural communities are especially exposed to the immediate effects of climate change. Renkl talks about the way she code-switches when writing about the rural South for a national audience. For more information on the Rural Assembly Everywhere conference, visit