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Working In These Times

Wednesday, Oct 28, 2009, 3:27 pm

A ‘Showdown’ Slideshow: Workers, Activists Fill Chicago’s Streets

BY Jeremy Gantz

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CHICAGO—The stage built outside the American Bankers Association conference for the final rally of the three-day "Showdown in Chicago" was quickly disassembled after buses full of protesters departed downtown Tuesday afternoon.

But for the thousands of people who took part in the varied events—gathering outside of bank offices, delivering letters to CEOs, and listening to speeches by union leaders, clergy and struggling Americans—the "showdown" marks a possible turning point in post-bailout America.

It's unclear if protesters' demands will be met by bankers and politicians in the coming months as unemployment and foreclosures inch upward. But for many who traveled here from around the country this week—including the unemployed and foreclosed upon—the protest itself seemed to offer a sort of salve, a way of tolerating day-to-day struggles with no end in sight.

Here's an audio slideshow full of images and sounds from the middle and last day of the "showdown," straight from the streets of Chicago. (Hint: Enter full-screen mode by clicking on the four-arrow icon above "credits.")

Photographs by Peter Holderness. Recordings by Jeremy Gantz. Slideshow production by both.

Jeremy Gantz is a contributing editor at the magazine. He is the editor of The Age of Inequality: Corporate America's War on Working People (2017, Verso), and was the Web/Associate Editor of In These Times from 2008 to 2012. A graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, he worked as a reporter for The Cambodia Daily in 2007. After graduating from Carleton College in 2004, he lived in Sri Lanka on a Fulbright scholarship, studying the intersection of ethnic politics and public education. His articles have also appeared in Chicago-area newspapers, Alternet and the Onion’s A.V. Club.

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