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A Celebration of Southwest Storytellers- PART 3




I love to write about activists and people who are working for change. It's amazing to me that people, in the face of all evidence to the contrary, continue to hope and continue to do the work.

- Demetria Martinez

We need writers in this country who sympathize with the three billion people on earth who live on less than two dollars a day so that 60% of United States citizens can be overweight and yet undernourished also.

-John Nichols

I grew up in Santa Clara Pueblo, and was told continuously that walking, moving, talking carefully was very important... because every step we take and every word that we speak has an impact on the whole of existence.

-Rina Swentzell

On September 27, 2003, Demetria Martínez, John Nichols, and Rina Swentzell gathered at the auditorium of Jemez Valley High School in Jemez Springs, New Mexico to participate in the third in a series of panel discussions featuring authors who represent the three major literary traditions of New Mexico-the Chicano, the Native American, and the Anglo. The events have all benefited the Friends of Jemez Springs Public Library.

In previous years, two other panels included noted writers Denise Chavez, Simon Ortiz, Michael McGarrity, Tony Hillerman, Rudolfo Anaya and N. Scott Momaday.

Demetria Martínez, Rina Swentzell, and John Nichols share a common interest in social justice, political issues, and struggles over collective memory as they explore the alternative narratives and cultural connections that have evolved out of their respective communities and histories.

"Like the previous two panels," says producer Paul Ingles, "this one was casual and good-natured. I think listeners who enjoy these authors - and even those who haven't read them yet - will be intrigued with the discussion."

The program was recorded by Nola Daves Moses. N. Scott Momaday was moderator at the original event. Judy Goldberg hosts the radio special. University of New Mexico English professor Dr. Elizabeth Archuleta collaborated with Ingles to write the script.

The program was produced by Albuquerque's Good Radio Shows, Inc. with support from the New Mexico Humanities Council and KUNM. Good Radio Shows Inc. is a non-profit media organization which produces programs to inspire, inform and improve the human condition. To find out how you can help support these programs, visit


Demetria Martínez was born in Albuquerque and raised by her parents and grandmother in Tucson, Arizona. She has worked as a free-lance journalist, but she is best known for her novel, Mother Tongue, which won the 1994 Western States Award for Fiction. She has also written several books of poetry, the latest being, Breathing between the Lines. Her journalism has covered controversial issues such as abortion and immigration, and her creative writing continues to include strong political messages.

Rina Naranjo Swentzell was born in Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico in 1939. She is the older sister of well-known modern sculptor and poet, Nora Naranjo-Morse, as well as the mother of celebrated potter, Roxanne Swentzell. Her work includes a children's book, Children of Clay: A Family of Pueblo Potters, and her writing also appears in magazines, scholarly journals, and edited collections. Swentzell serves as a consultant to museums, including Santa Fe's Institute of American Indian Arts and the Smithsonian.

John Nichols was born in 1943 in Berkley, California. He is best known for his novel, The Milagro Beanfield War, which has been called a contemporary Grapes of Wrath with Mark Twain's down-home humor. Made into a film by Robert Redford, The Milagro Beanfield War is Part One of a New Mexico trilogy that includes The Magic Journey and The Nirvana Blues. Recently, UNM Press released his latest book, Dancing on the Stones, a collection of essays, speeches, and articles from the last 35 years.

N. Scott Momaday(moderator): A Pulitzer Prize winning novelist, poet, artist and literary critic. His work includes House Made of Dawn, In the Bear's House and The Ancient Child.

Producer Paul Ingles: a 28 year broadcast veteran and has won numerous awards for his work from the NFCB, OEBIE, and Associated Press. His productions include Peace Talks: Making Peace with Ourselves Since 9-11, The Human Experience, Peace on Earth: A Holiday Folk Tour with Judy Collins, George Harrison: An Appreciation, and In Search of James Brown.

Host Judy Goldberg is a radio and film producer, whose latest work includes the Backroads Radio series.

Click here to hear the entire program in RealAudio.

Click here to view the transcript.

Full program available now via download for members of the Public Radio Exchange (

CDs available for broadcast at $20 each. For information or to order CDs, 505-255-1219 or email