Made in Detroit
It seems that about 1/3 of Detroit has gone to seed. In the past fifty years, since they heyday of Motown, the population has dropped from 2 million, to less than a million. An article in the blog City Farmer discusses current serious interest in converting vacant land to urban farms. Another blog, Politics in the Zeros, also posted an article on this subject recently.
Here in Amsterdam, an astonishing film was shown at Arcam last week. Made In Detroit by Dutch documentary filmmakers Masha & Manfred Poppenk is about Ferguson Academy for for Young Women in Detroit, an alternative high school which teaches young teen mothers to farm on the schools own grounds, less than three kilometers from the city center. The farm includes an orchard, dairy, and bee hives, as well as organically grown crops which they sell at Detroit’s Eastern Market. It is a beautiful and thoughtfully made film. (Update 2009: since posting a few hours ago, the film has been blocked pending right, permissions, etc…. hopefully it will be made available again soon.)
Update 30/6/2018: Film title changed at some point to Grown in Detroit. Ferguson Academy (CFA) closed in 2014. Another school for teen mothers, Pathways, replaced it, but at a different location and apparently without the farming component.