In 2017 North Carolina Folklife Institute was proud to sponsore Traditions of Resistance: Civil Rights Protests in North Carolina’s Lumbee Community. This collection of photographs, shot by Rob Amberg during a tumultuous period in Robeson County, North Carolina history, chronicle civil disobedience fueled by the deaths of community members and assassination of Julian T. Pierce, a candidate for Robeson County superior court judge.
Mr. Amberg’s photographs offer a journalistic perspective of a community in turmoil. Amberg’s photographs are testament to the power of community in action, the strength of everyday citizens, the unity created when communities driven to confront injustice. The nine photographs featured in Traditions of Resistance: Civil Rights Protests in North Carolina’s Lumbee Community are available for installation with support from the North Carolina Folklife Institute and the North Carolina Folklore Society.
Rob Amberg’s work has largely focused on rural communities, family farms, and the environment. His work is regularly published and exhibited nationally. He is the recipient of awards from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the North Carolina Humanities Council, the Center for Documentary Studies, and others. He moved to Madison County, North Carolina, in 1973 and began what has become his lifetime project – writing and photographing about the evolving culture and environment of his adopted county. His first book, Sodom Laurel Album, was published in 2002 by the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke and the University of North Carolina Press. In 2004, he had the honor of presenting his Sodom Laurel Album at the Library of Congress. In July 2012, Amberg began serving as a Visiting Artist at Duke University, working specifically with a Literacy Project for middle-school students in Madison County.
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