Welcome

In the sidebar to your right under Content, you will find pages with many resources related to Mr. Berry's work.

This site is not owned, operated or sanctioned by Mr. Berry, whose disapproval of computer technology is well-documented. "I hear that I have a website, but I didn't do those things. My instrument is a pencil."

The one person responsible for all of this is me, Br. Tom Murphy (btwb@brtom.org). I am not a personal friend or employee of Mr. Berry and am thus not able to arrange interviews or appearances by him.

Please support the work of The Berry Center: "like" them at Facebook and follow at Twitter. And whenever possible, please support your local, independent bookstores.

Thanks for stopping by.


Berry Center Bookstore Announces Open House

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The Bookstore at The Berry Center in New Castle, Kentucky will celebrate its Annual Open House on Saturday, December 10 from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

Mr. Berry, Ed McClanahan, Gray Zeitz and many others will be present for readings and signings.

An exhibit of art by Harlan Hubbard will be featured along with a demonstration of woodblock printing by Bill Caddell.

Some special attention will be given this year to Larkspur Press, Mr. Zeitz's long-running letterpress venture which has published quite a few of Mr. Berry's writings.  The event hails the release of Gabrielle Fox's Larkspur Press: Forty Years of Making Letterpress Books in a Rural Kentucky Community, 1974–2014.


Wendell Berry at Centre College

Renowned writer Wendell Berry visited Centre College Monday night to speak for a crowd of several hundred at the Norton Center. 

Berry, an 82-year-old farmer and environmental activist who has authored dozens of works over the course of more than five decades, read a pair of his works and fielded a handful of questions during the hour-long event. 

Berry read one story that examined the lives of family farmers who earn a kind of freedom caring for their small plots of land, even as industrialization consumes more and more of the world around them. 

Berry’s second piece was actually written prior to the first one, and focused on the frugal spending habits of the same rural farm families. It presented the idea that who people are cannot be represented by economic principles.

For more, go to The Advocate-Messenger.


Wendell Berry and James Rebanks, November 9

James Rebanks wandered into the literary landscape in 2015 with the release of his memoir, “The Shepherd’s Life: Modern Dispatches from an Ancient Landscape.” A sheep farmer from Matterdale, England, Rebanks’ prose about his simple yet fulfilling lifestyle touched many people. His book received rave reviews and landed on The New York Times’ best-seller list.

Practicing a simple life also is a mantra Kentucky author, poet and farmer Wendell Berry lives by, and on Wednesday, Berry will get a chance to interview Rebanks at a free event held at the Louisville Free Public Library. Presented in partnership with Carmichael’s Bookstore, the evening should be a lively one, as two powerful writers discuss camaraderie, tradition and the poetry of rural life.

See more at Insider Louisville.


On Poetry, Angry Rhetoric, and Wendell Berry

Wendell Berry is a Kentucky farmer, author, poet, essayist, and activist. My high school English teacher and track coach, who is now retired, has said Wendell Berry may be the sanest man in America. I agree. Wendell Berry is a modern wise-man, a rare American sage, who speaks with the authority of the aged. I have benefited greatly from his essays, novels, and short stories. His poetry is a good introduction to his work. 

He wrote “To A Siberian Woodsman” in the late 1960s during the cold war when we were taught to hate the Russians. This poem carries the weight of a societal elder who brings insight and counsel from another world. Berry is a prophet. He is both a poet and a farmer, which offers credentials much more substantial than those so-called “prophets” with self-appointed titles, blogs, and  YouTube channels. These lackluster “prophets” are lost in a mixed-up sea of conservative politics and a doomsday eschatology. Berry isn’t like that. He is a prophet like Amos, the fig farmer.

Read the complete article by Derek Vreeland at Missio Alliance.


A Reflection on Wendell Berry due in Spring 2017

Ragan Sutterfield has announced that his new work entitled Wendell Berry and The Given Life will be out sometime in late March, 2017.

We drive to work on the stored energy of ten thousand years of sunlight. Our daily bread seems to generate miraculously from store shelves. And our communities can be connected with a billion ones and zeros over fiber optic cables. For us, the idea of being a creature can seem passé. Yet in this lonely world of mastery, in a time so dominated by human desire and design that it has been dubbed the “anthropocene,” the human age, many of us feel that we are missing some essential truth about who we are.

The glimpses of this truth come when we lose cell reception on a long hike in the forest and our eyes are lifted to the simple marvel of trees. We feel this truth when we take up a shovel and sense the satisfying heave of dirt as we plant a modest garden. We hear this truth when we tune out the traffic and listen to the song sparrow’s melody, eavesdropping on a beauty that serves no human economy. In all this we hear a whisper of the truth that we are creatures—and we long to live in this reality. But how can we, when we have moved so far from our life source in the soil?

For the past 50 years, Wendell Berry has been helping seekers chart a return to the practice of being creatures. Through his essays, poetry and fiction, Berry has repeatedly drawn our attention to the ways in which our lives are gifts in a whole economy of gifts.

Berry presents us with the sort of coherent vision for the lived moral and spiritual life that we need now. His work helps us remember our givenness and embrace our life as creatures. His insights flow from a life and practices, and so it is a vision that can be practiced and lived—it is a vision that is grounded in the art of being a creature.

Wendell Berry and the Given Life articulates his vision for the creaturely life and the Christian understandings of humility and creation that underpin it.

See it at Goodreads.