Public Presentations

Arts and Artistry from the New Deal and Beyond

Oct. 19-21, 2017

Johnny Cash on the Back Porch of the Boyhood Home
Johnny Cash on the Back Porch of the Boyhood Home


The  Johnny Cash Heritage Festival will include a public presentation series, “Arts and Artistry from the New Deal and Beyond,”  in the Dyess Colony Circle.  Presentations will be from 1 p.m. Thursday through 11:00 a.m. Saturday.  All sessions are open to the public.   There will be no admission fee, but participants will be asked to register for sessions in advance to assist in ensuring adequate space.  Presentations will focus on influences of Dyess on Johnny Cash and his music, federal efforts during the New Deal to get destitute people back on their feet, the music that grew out of the Eastern Arkansas Delta, and cultural programs associated with the New Deal.


Bill McDowell, professor of art and art history at the University of Vermont in Burlington, and Michael Streissguth, professor of Mass Media and Communication at Le Moyne College, will serve as keynote speakers.  (Specific times to be announced.) McDowell’s recently published book, Ground: A Reprise of Photographs from the Farm Security Administration (FSA), includes the printed lyrics to “Sunken Land” by Rosanne Cash, a nod to the hardships of life in Dyess.  Streissguth has authored three books on Johnny Cash, including Johnny Cash:  The Biography published in 2006.


JCHF Public Presentations Committee
c/o Dr. Gregory Hansen, Chair
Arkansas State University
Dept. of English and Philosophy
P.O. Box 1890
State University, AR 72467
Phone: 870-972-3043
Fax: 870-972-3045