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A New and Unsettling Force

Jane Norling

The Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival Portfolio features a series of twenty-five
screenprints by twenty-four artists that express the fundamental principles and core concepts that guide the work of
the new Poor People’s Campaign. On December 4, 1967, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. announced plans for a
Poor People’s Campaign and called for the nation to take dramatic steps to end poverty. In the wake of his
assassination the Campaign went forward but fell short of its vision. Fifty years later, a new Poor People’s
Campaign has emerged from over a decade of work by grassroots movements fighting to end poverty, racism,
militarism, and environmental destruction. The Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival is
building a broad and deep national movement—rooted in the leadership of poor people—to unite from the bottom
up in a Campaign that can bring forth a moral revolution of values to achieve equality and justice for all people.

On the 50th anniversary of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Beyond Vietnam speech, organizers from the new Poor
People’s Campaign reached out to artists across the country with a general call for artwork addressing the themes
central to the Campaign. Justseeds Artists’ Cooperative responded to the call by setting out to make a popular
education portfolio for Campaign activists and organizers to use during regional and local teach-ins in preparation
for the 40 Days of Moral Action that will begin on Mother’s Day, May 2018.

 

A pen and ink line drawing of a crowd of smiling people marching. They hold up signs, placards, and banners which state: “POOR PEOPLE’S CAMPAIGN,” “ORGANIZE,” “JUSTICE,” “UNITY,” “TAKING ACTION TOGETHER,” “LOVE.” The people are intergenerational and diverse, including one woman who wears a hijab. Below, the text states: “A NEW AND UNSETTLING FORCE. ‘When Poor People Take Action Together they will do so with a freedom and power that will be a new and unsettling force.’ — Martin Luther King, Jr, 1967.”



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