Saturday, January 9, 2016

A Woman of Inexhaustible Energy

Where: National Portrait Gallery

When: through May 15, 2016

Dolores Herta is the subject of the current "One Life" installment, the first Latina to be featured.  She worked with Cesar Chavez in the farm workers movement of the 1960s and 1970s.  Because Chavez was the more charismatic of the two, he tended to get all the press attention; this exhibit seeks to redress that imbalance.

Huerta was the United Farm Workers lobbyist and a tough contract negotiator, as well as the mother of 11 children.  And I thought I had a busy schedule...

Raised by a single mother, she lived in a home that practiced gender equality, which helped her enormously in dealing with the male-dominated world of union organizing.  As hard-nosed a negotiator as she was, she and the farm workers movement generally, espoused civil disobedience and non-violence.

Something I noticed was a  picture of her speaking at a rally wearing a vest with the farm workers logo on it - and then the vest itself displayed next to it on the wall.  If there's not a name for that (a picture of something and then the thing itself), there needs to be.

Verdict: A worthy entry in the "One Life" series; get a more complete picture of the farm workers movement at this exhibit.

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