“Astronaut Goes From Migrant Fields To Outer Space”

                                                  a film by David Moolten    





In the U.S. immigration is both proud and tragic legacy.  Except for the original people from whom a continent was stolen,

we are all immigrants or descendants of immigrants. Yet each new wave that arrives with few possessions

and many dreams find they survive, not because of, but in spite of, what they find: the least rewarding

and most dangerous work, and the contempt of those already here.

As a child, Jose M. Hernandez trekked from Mexico to the fields of California where he picked strawberries

with his family under the tense and squalid conditions migrant laborers still experience.

In the summer of 2009, he traveled into space as an astronaut on the Discovery space shuttle.

His story honors both the desperate struggle of immigrants and the greatness of which they are capable.

"As a filmmaker, I feel I must contribute in some way to the search for justice.  Because
as an issue immigration is so contentious and sensitive, I have also been striving
to find a perspective that rises above the standard arguments, that is positive as well
as principled, in the hopes that I might reach those on all sides. In making a film about
the astronaut Jose Hernandez, I believe I have found this point of view.”

David Moolten is an award winning poet.

His most recent book, Primitive Mood, won the T.S. Eliot Prize

from Truman State University Press and was published in the fall of 2009.

He can be contacted by email at dmoolten@gmail.com

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