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Moe FonerMoe Foner
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Well, badly -- in art terms. [laughter] I remember meeting in the summer time with the p.r. person from the publishing house -- it was one of the major publishing houses -- and discussing with him a plan. They said they would cover the cost of an evening, a reception. That's all I have to hear! “You'll cover the cost for me, you'll do the mailing. I'll give you the list and you'll mail it out?” Okay. They agreed to do that and we put together, working with Mimi and Earl, an evening which was supported largely -- in terms of the audience -- by the J.P. Stevens campaign. It was Friday night, and it was the equivalent of an opening. Maureen Hedgepeth was in town at the time, so she spoke. Mimi spoke, Earl spoke, and Joe Uehlein and Si Cahn came up to sing songs of textile workers. Mimi did some reading from her book. I remember there was radio there, and photographers. We sold books, and we sold 350 books that night. Dotter was autographing the poster and selling them there. It was a very warm and exciting evening. You tell me that you were there, so, I have to be careful on this thing! [laughter]

But bringing up the textile workers, I persuaded Murray that it would be a good idea, and since it was a good idea I think he should pay for it. So they gave us a grant [laughs] in addition to covering the sending up.

This was also the time when the film Norma Rae was coming out. Marty Ritt is someone I've known from way way back, and his wife is a very good friend of Faith Hubley. Faith called me one day and said, “Marty and his wife are in town” -- I forget her name -- (Adele Ritt) -- “and they have a picture that I'd like you to see. She'll call you.” She calls me and says, “We'd like you to come to see this film. It's called Norma Rae.” I went to see the film in a preview studio. I was prepared for anything, you know. I didn't know what it was about, just that it was about textile workers. I was really stunned by the film. I immediately said, “You've got to have showings, you've got to get Murray Finley, you've got to get everybody.” They told me that the producers were not sure how to advertise the show. They didn't want it to be a union show. At that time the women's movement was beginning to move, so they thought maybe it was a women's rights thing. I said, “You've got to go all out with labor on this.” As a result -- I don't think that that was the decisive thing, but -- we got a lot of union leaders to see the show. They got very excited about it. The producers of Norma Rae, I remember, decided at our request, they gave us a little hunk of the film to show on the videotape, and big posters outside the gallery. I remember Ron Liebman coming to the gallery for a press conference. So we were linking everything on this subject at one time.

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