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Religion and Resistance in AppalachiaFaith and the Fight Against Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining$
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Joseph D. Witt

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813168128

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813168128.001.0001

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Seeking Justice

Seeking Justice

Religion, Service, and Defending the Poor in Appalachia

(p.59) 2 Seeking Justice
Religion and Resistance in Appalachia

Joseph D. Witt

University Press of Kentucky

This chapter examines various eco-justice perspectives against mountaintop removal in the twenty-first-century movement, including influences from Catholic social teachings and mainline Protestant social justice work. Many of these efforts first emerged in the War on Poverty era, transitioning into activism against strip mining in the later twentieth century. Advocates of this position often cast resistance to mountaintop removal in a broader historical perspective of activism against social injustice. Mountaintop removal, they argue, constitutes a violation of the rights of the poor and needy, exploiting the lives and labor of rural Appalachians in favor of economic profits. The chapter provides specific accounts of individuals and organizations that offer this perspective in their work against mountaintop removal.

Keywords:   Eco-Justice, Catholic Social Teaching, Mainline Protestant, War on Poverty

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