“I Can’t Believe We Still Have to Protest this Shit” is the blog of Trish Kahle, an activist, writer, and historian living in Chicago, IL, where she is working toward a Ph.D. at the University of Chicago and is a member of the International Socialist Organization.

Her research focuses on Central Appalachian coal miners after World War II, examining different aspects of a complex and under-studied history, including the participation of American miners in the movement against South African apartheid, the role of women miners in democratizing their union, and role of coal mining communities in shaping national policy during the energy crisis of the 1960s and 1970s.

While living in Greensboro, NC, Trish was an organizer with Students for Justice in Palestine, SlutWalk Greensboro, Greensboro Radical Historians, and NC Defend Education.  As a member of the research team for Political Prisoners in North America, she performed case research for Mondo we Langa and Ed Poindexter and helped to digitize many of their writings and case materials.  She is also a member of various artist solidarity efforts including Artists for Wisconsin Workers and Occupy Writers.  In Chicago, she is a rank-and-file member of the Workers Organizing Committee of Chicago (Fight for 15), as well as a member of Graduate Students United at the University of Chicago.

In addition, she works with groups and individuals dedicated to activism through art, including Authoring Action and Hidden Voices.  Her fiction and poetry have appeared in publications such as the Rio Grande Review, Prism, and Barbaric Yawp.  Her artwork and photography have appeared in shows in Connecticut, Virginia, and North Carolina.  She is working on her first novel and writes and performs sketch comedy.

Trish regularly gives presentations on varied topics, including women’s rights, imperialism, Palestine solidarty, Islamophobia and the role of art in activism.  She spoke on the 2010 Salem College Black History Month Panel, “How Do We Create Change?” and the 2010 Women’s Day Panel, “What Would Women’s Equality Look Like?”  In 2012, she gave a teach-in at the Guilford College MLK Day celebrations and presented at the Left Forum on the cases of Mondo we Langa and Ed Poindexter.  The Greensboro Human Relations Commission invited her to present “How can the 99% Unite to Fight Racism?”  Recently, she has focused on labor issues, especially the Fight for 15 and the crisis in academic labor.


Jacobin Magazine: “Beyond Fast Food Strikes.”

The Ecologist: “They Poisoned the River for a Clean Coal Lie.”


“Mobilizing Precarity.” Panel with Laura Goldblatt and Cat Salonek at the MLA Subconference, January 9, 2014.

Speaking on Fight for 15 and the role of left at the SYRIZA Youth Festival in Athens. And on another panel about worker organization the same weekend.

“From Walmart to Wendy’s: New Low-Wage Workers’ Struggles.” with Sarah Jaffe at Socialism 2013.

My review of Gary M. Lavergne’s Before Brown: Heman Marion Sweatt, Thurgood Marshall, and the Long Road to Justice will appear in this Summer’s volume of Callaloo: a Journal of African Diaspora Arts and Letters.

I am also currently working on a piece on the political economy of low wage labor, which will appear later this year.

  1. David Stewart says:

    Hi Trish,

    Great to meet you and I like your blog! I was lucky enough to have my write-up posted in http://www.counterpunch.org. Please check it out. “On the Line in Chicago” by David Stewart.
    All the best,

  2. Gordon Simmons says:

    Thank you from West Virginia for your posts on the chemical spill

  3. And thank you from over here at The Ecologist in UK. We just ran your Elk River article: http://bit.ly/1dT0yLW

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