ENACT Legacies Documentary

In August 2020, the Environmental Justice HistoryLab released its second documentary film, Environmental Action for Survival: Celebrating the Organizers of the 1970 Teach-In on the Environment and 50 Years of Environmental Activism. Researched and produced by Matthew Woodbury, this documentary is a sequel to The ENACT Teach-In of 1970 and is based on interviews conducted with seven of the organizers of the ENACT Teach-In on the Environment during the 50th anniversary commemoration held in March 2020.  Watch the documentary here:

Fifty years after ENACT (Environmental Action for Survival) organized a major Teach-in on the Environment at the University of Michigan in March 1970, key figures involved in planning the event returned to Ann Arbor to celebrate and reflect on a half-century of environmental advocacy. Drawing from archival materials and interviews with ENACT organizers, this 30-minute documentary uncovers why the teach-in was so significant; how those involved went on to engage environmental issues at local, national, and international levels; and what they see as key issues facing current generations of activists.

Featuring Barbara Reid Alexander, David Allan, George Coling, Elizabeth Grant Kingwill, Arthur Hanson, John Russell, and Doug Scott.

Researched and produced by Matthew Woodbury for the Environmental Justice HistoryLab. Additional research and assistance by Matthew Lassiter and Naomi Fergusson.

Dr. Matthew Woodbury is a research associate at the University of Michigan and served as a project advisor and contributor to Environmental Justice HistoryLab during the 2019-2020 academic year and the following summer. Woodbury also instructed the “Historical Filmmaking: Environmental Activism at U-M” course in Winter 2020 and led that student team in producing a previous documentary film, The Environmental Action for Survival (ENACT) Teach-In of 1970. Trained as a historian of Britain and the British Empire, his research interests focus on how communities learn from, utilize, and seek to regulate environments at both local and global scales. In addition to teaching courses in environmental history, he has written about the history of Ann Arbor’s Ecology Center as part of the Ecology Center at 50 series, developed in partnership with the Environmental Justice HistoryLab.