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KNOXVILLE — The University of Tennessee’s Ready for the World program will kick off its year-long Celebration of Appalachian Peoples and Cultures in October.

“What better way is there to begin to understand the interaction of world cultures than to study the cultures that historically have lived on the land where we now study and reside?” said Mary Papke, co-director of UT’s Ready for the World initiative. “In the Appalachian Mountains, European settlers and established Indian tribes met, clashed and collaborated. Cultures throughout civilization have faced the same challenges as they’ve come into contact with one another.”

The Warriors of the AniKituhwa, traditional Cherokee dancers, will perform at 10:30 a.m. on Oct. 6 and at 1 p.m. on Oct. 7 in the campus amphitheater between Hodges Library and the Humanities and Social Sciences Building.

The Warriors serve as official cultural ambassadors for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. Their performances are part of the opening of the McClung Museum Henry Timberlake exhibit, “Emissaries of Peace: The 1762 Cherokee & British Delegations,” which runs from Oct. 6 to Feb. 16, 2007.

“We’re especially privileged to host the Warriors of AniKituhwa on our campus in conjunction with the Emissaries of Peace exhibit,” Papke said.

Ready for the World: the International and Intercultural Awareness Initiative is a long-range plan to transform the UT campus into a culture of diversity that prepares students for working and living in the global environment of the 21st century.

Films portraying the life and times of the Appalachian people also are scheduled on campus this fall as part of the Ready for the World program.

All films begin at 7 p.m. in Hodges Library. The presentations are free and open to the public, although seating is limited. The schedule follows:

“The Appalachians: First Frontier” and “The Appalachians: Fight for Land and Work” (2005) will show Oct. 2. The two films examine the first waves of settlers and a century of conflict and tragedy.

A third installment of the series, “The Appalachians: Culture of Survival” (2005), will show on Oct. 4.

On Oct. 25 the documentary, “Unto These Hills” (1997) will show. The film depicts the Trail of Tears.

Another documentary, “Mountain Talk” (2003) will show on Oct. 26. The film provides a peek into the songs and stories of the Appalachian Mountains.

“Sergeant York,” an Academy Award Nominee in 1941, will show Nov. 1.

“Matewan” (1999) explores a struggle between two economic systems in a rural coal-mining town. The film will play on Nov. 8.

“Coal Miner’s Daughter,” the 1980 autobiography of Loretta Lynn starring Sissy Spacek and Tommy Lee Jones, will follow on Nov. 9.

The final film, “October Sky,” will show on Nov. 15. The movie follows the true story of a coal miner’s son, Homer Hickam, and his dream to build rockets.

Amy Blakely, (865) 974-5034,