True freedom is neither attained nor sustained by individuals. Freedom is a collaboration attained and sustained through cooperation. Petersburg, Virginia shows the need to bridge the American partisan divide. By embracing our oftentimes unjust history, perhaps we can collectively come to better know and embrace ourselves – all Americans.
A Glorious Victory records how the people of Petersburg endure the tangible consequences preceding ideological conflicts, outside the theatrical abstractions presented by contemporary media and political discourse. Through a sustained and open engagement with its citizens, we have observed Freedom as history, as a right, as stolen, as lost, in acts of joy, desperation, and violence, and as a continuum ever-shifted by struggle.
Petersburg has played a pivotal role in our shared national narratives of subjugation and freedom: native American displacement, the Revolutionary and Civil Wars, Free Black settlements, and the Civil Rights movement, amongst many. If Petersburg literally holds within its borders so many significant passages from our American narrative, what does this reveal about the realities of America’s Dream, Exceptionalism, and Freedom?
All images and text © Shane Rocheleau
By Shane Rocheleau
Edge of Humanity Magazine is an independent nondiscriminatory platform that has no religious, political, financial, or social affiliations.
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