The Highlander Reasearch and Education Center is an iconic institution of the American Left
According to their website
The Highlander Center is a residential popular education and research organization based on a 106-acre farm in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, twenty-five miles east of Knoxville, Tennessee.
Since 1932, Highlander has gathered workers, grassroots leaders, community organizers, educators, and researchers to address the most pressing social, environmental and economic problems facing the people of the South. Highlander sponsors educational programs and research into community problems, as well as a residential Workshop Center for social change organizations and workers active in the South and internationally. Generations of activists have come to Highlander to learn, teach, and prepare to participate in struggles for justice.
Highlander’s work is rooted in the belief that in a truly just and democratic society the policies shaping political and economic life must be informed by equal concern for and participation by all people. Guided by this belief, we help communities that suffer from unfair government policies and big-business practices as they voice their concerns and join with others to form movements for change.
Over the course of its history, Highlander has played important roles in many major political movements, including the Southern labor movements of the 1930s, the Civil Rights Movement of the 1940s-60s, and the Appalachian people’s movements of the 1970s-80s.
Because of our past accomplishments, many think of Highlander as a historical place where great movements were nurtured. But Highlander is more than its history – Highlander is an ongoing story of the people who continue to gather here today to tell their stories and join with others to fight for justice, peace, and fairness, not just for themselves, but for everyone.