For Educators

Seven Sisters is a powerful resource for anyone interested in fields ranging from Women's Studies, to History, Appalachian Studies, Cultural Anthropology, Health and Human Development, Sociology, Oral History and others. With a critically acclaimed soundtrack that was itself a musical pilgrimage to the songs of these women's childhood, it also offers a great opportunity for music historians as well.

Currently Seven Sisters is in the libraries of a number of universities (including Appalachian State University and the University of Kentucky) and is being used in a variety of curricula. The humanities advisor for the film was Betsy Taylor, the Research Director at the Center for Appalachian Studies at the University of Kentucky. Presentations with the filmmaker have been given to both an Appalachian Studies class at the University of Kentucky and to a Women's Studies program at Transylvania University. (Both the filmmaker and the band are available for special screenings and/or presentations. Contact us at the e-mail address below for more information.)

Seven Sisters runs 86 minutes, and can also be easily broken up into three separate parts of approximately 30 minutes each, corresponding with each "act" of the film–"On the Farm," "Leaving Home" and "A New Home"–which makes it easy to view and discuss in hour-long classes. Visit the link "using in chapters" on how to screen the film in three chapters.

Seven Sisters is designed to address the issues surrounding the often negative stereotypes in the portrayal of Appalachia in the media, and to dispel a number of these myths. The film also has a great deal of potential for classroom discussion and study on a wide range of issues–from the journey of the sisters as a family of women, to the historical events and contexts that affected their lives, to discrimination and community to musical themes and roots.

As a starting point for classroom discussions, please check out some of our suggested discussion guides, with talking point ideas for Women's Studies, Cultural Studies, History, Human Growth and Development, and Music. For suggested readings and films to use with Seven Sisters, please visit suggested additional materials.

And please feel free to contact us at the e-mail link listed below--for special presentations with the director, to set up campus screenings, or for any questions you or your class may have. And if you have suggestions or novel uses of the film in the classroom, let us know!

VHS copies of the film for school and library use are available for purchase either on-line or through regular mail. (P.O.#s are accepted, too.) For information on how to obtain a copy, please visit the Purchase a Copy link.

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