Through the stories of twenty individuals, and informed by interviews with more than seventy people, Voices from Bears Ears captures the passions of those who fought to protect Bears Ears and those who opposed the monument as a federal “land grab” that threatened to rob them of their economic future. It gives voice to those who have felt silenced, ignored, or disrespected. It shares stories of those who celebrate a growing movement by Indigenous peoples to protect ancestral lands and culture, and those who speak devotedly about their Mormon heritage. What unites these individuals is a reverence for a homeland that defines their cultural and spiritual identity, and therein lies hope for finding common ground.
Journalist Rebecca Robinson provides context and perspective for understanding the ongoing debate and humanizes the abstract issues at the center of the debate. Interwoven with these stories are photographs of the interviewees and the land they consider sacred by photographer Stephen E. Strom. Through word and image, Robinson and Strom allow us to both hear and see the people whose lives are intertwined with this special place.
About the Author
Stephen E. Strom received his PhD in astronomy from Harvard University in 1964. Strom’s photographic work is held in several permanent collections, including the Center for Creative Photography in Tucson. His most recent book is Bears Ears: Views from a Sacred Land.
“Protection of Bears Ears as a sacred cultural landscape was an historic step forward, a watershed moment too quickly shattered. This insightful book keeps a deep conversation between land and people alive and provides hope that western culture will continue that dialogue as we learn to honor and respect sacred lands.”—Christopher “Toby” McLeod, Sacred Land Film Project