JONESTOWN SURVIVOR Presenting at Communal Studies Association Conference

I have been presenting my scholarly research papers at the Communal Studies Association Conference for seven years. Two years ago, I was elected to the Board of Directors of the CSA. This year, the Conference will be in Amana, Iowa on October 9-11.

The conference theme this year is: “Form Follows Faith: The Influence of Belief on the Architecture and Crafts of American Communal Societies.” Papers that explore the ways in which religious and social beliefs and ideals informed the distinctive community and social organization, architecture, crafts and other products of communal societies are encouraged.

Laura Johnston Kohl Abstract:

Form follows Faith: The Influence of Belief on the Architecture and Crafts of American Communal Societies.

JONESTOWN ARCHITECTURE AND CRAFTS
I was a member and resident of Peoples Temple both in California and in Guyana, from 1970 through 1978. In the United States and in Georgetown, Guyana, we moved into pre-existing buildings. In Jonestown, we constructed the entire community according to our belief in communalism and equality.

In Jonestown, residents created crafts and other products which could be used in the community or bartered for supplies we needed.

I will bring a power point presentation of the Jonestown structures, inside and out, and the architectural map of our community. I will discuss the property layout of Jonestown and our thinking as we built our community. I will also bring photos of some of the Jonestown crafts.

Laura Johnston Kohl
Bilingual Educator and Author
Member, Board of Directors CSA

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