African, Native American & European Foods Come Together

at Film Discussion in Danville on September 18th

African American Heritage  •  Food & Community  •  News  •  Virginia Indians

Danville, Va. – Filmmaker Jamie S. Ross will show clips from her latest film, At the Common Table, at the Danville Public Library on Tuesday September 18, 2018.

The screening and discussion are the last in a series produced by History United, a program of Virginia Humanities, called Our Civil Rights: A Common Table. The series—facilitated by Ina Dixon, a doctoral student at UNC-Chapel Hill—explores food, race, and history in the South.

Jamie S. Ross

Ross is the director of Red Dirt Productions ( and has worked for more than thirty years writing, directing, and producing books, articles, and documentaries on American history and culture.

Ross focuses on stories that illuminate the connection of people to the land and to one another. Her PBS environmental history series, APPALACHIA: A History of Mountains and Peoples was narrated by Sissy Spacek and named “Best Video of the Year” by the American Library Association. Ross is also the author of Listening to the Land: Stories from the Cacapon and Lost River which chronicles the land ethic of a traditional farming community in West Virginia.

At the Common Table is the first documentary to trace the path of Southern foods across the miles and centuries, from the shores of Africa and Europe to the New World. Whenever Southerners sit down to eat, traditional African, Native American, and European cuisine is on the plate. Ross’s film highlights how Southern food cuts across lines of race, class, age, gender, politics and religion. Southern cooking, reinforced by these connections to place and family, maintains a position of honor on Southern plates today.

Attendees are invited to bring a dish to share. Refreshments, provided by the Friends of the Danville Public Library, will be served at 5:30 p.m in the library auditorium. The program will begin at 6:00 p.m. and conclude at 7:30 p.m., including time for discussion.

About History United – A program of Virginia Humanities, History United uses local history to encourage investment in the future of the Dan River Region and to build a strong collaborative network of organizations and individuals committed to positive change. For more information, visit

About Virginia Humanities – Virginia Humanities connects people and ideas to explore the human experience and inspire cultural engagement. As the state humanities council, Virginia Humanities reaches millions in its estimated annual audience through festivals, grants, fellowships, digital initiatives, teacher institutes, radio programs, podcasts, apprenticeships, and school programs. Headquartered at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia Humanities endeavors to serve Virginians in every corner of the Commonwealth. To learn more visit