THURSDAY: Join Us for “Factories on Film, Stage and Books” Digital Event

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Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage, bestselling author Beth Macy & director Bob Jury will take part.

Labor Day is next Monday. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, the holiday is likely to look a little different than usual — there aren't likely to be many parades or family barbecues this year.

But Labor Day 2020 may just be the perfect time to reflect on the role that American workers and the labor movement have played in our nation's history. Here at the Alliance for American Manufacturing, we are kicking things off on Thursday evening with a special digital event looking at how the working class has been portrayed in American culture, and we've put together an unmatched panel of experts to offer their thoughts, including:

  • Playwright Lynn Nottage, who won a Pulitzer Prize for her play Sweat. The critically acclaimed production follows a group of unionized steelworkers in Reading, Pa., as they deal with deindustrialization and the eventual closure of their factory. Notably, AAM's own Dean Showers was among the real life factory workers who met with Nottage as she wrote the play. 
  • Bestselling author Beth Macy, whose book Dopesick provides a detailed account of the country's opioid epidemic. However, AAM supporters may best remember Macy from her 2014 work, Factory Man, which followed furniture maker John Bassett III as he fought to keep his Virginia factory open, including by taking on China. 
  • Director Robert Jury, whose latest film, Working Man, looks at what happens to the residents of a small town when the local plastics factory shut down. Jury joined us for an episode of The Manufacturing Report podcast earlier this summer, and shared the story of how the real life factory where the movie was filmed shut down, a sad case of life imitating art. Jury also just wrapped up a special drive-in tour, where he screened the movie for audiences in industrial towns across the country.

AAM President Scott Paul is set to host on Thursday. The webinar is slated to kick off at 7 p.m. ET and 4 p.m. PT, and will run for about 60 minutes. You can register here, and if you have questions for the panel, send them our way to