Berry in his opening remarks said, “This is about discovery or a book
of revelation. That’s very much the kind of book this is. Robert Frost
wanted his readers to think what a hell of a good time he had writing
it. And your book very much communicates that. What a hell of a good
time you had writing it.” Further on, he added, “It’s an adventure book,
a participatory book. There’s lots of humor.”
“Thanks for your book review,” Pollan responded. “It’s the nicest one
I’ve gotten and I really do appreciate it…The reason this book is
dedicated to you is because you’ve connected the dots between very
ordinary things—the plate in front of us and the farm and garden
systems, both natural and economic, that organize our lives. “
Kentucky farmer and writer Wendell Berry interviewed food journalist Michael Pollan last night [1 May 2013] in Louisville. ... Over the course of the evening, they discussed Pollan's new book
"Cooked" and the bigger issues it raises. Here are five takeaways from
the interview ...
Last year about this time my daughter, Ariana, took the bus down from
New York City to come home for a night because Wendell Berry would be
appearing at the Kennedy Center the next evening. We did not have
tickets so we arrived early to hopefully get coveted standby tickets.
We went so early we were the first ones in the line, which eventually
got rather long. As it turned out, we ended up front and center, as
Wendell Berry delivered the most moving personal indictment of the
destruction of the American family farmer and global capitalism, before
thousands of people, for the annual Jefferson Lecture.
And [Vandana Shiva] is the founder and moral hurricane powering the Navdanya Research Foundation, a “movement to protect the diversity and integrity of living resources, especially native seeds.”
In addressing the Louisville crowd, Shiva began with a tribute to
Berry. He is “someone opposed to oversimplification, to reductionism, to
monocultures; especially mental monocultures,” she said, “which are the
products of modern universities.”
Wendell Berry is the author of more than fifty books of poetry, fiction, and essays, and for more than forty years, he has lived and farmed with his wife, Tanya Berry, in Kentucky. Berry is also a well-known environmental activist, and he will be present to participate this summer at the annual Unitarian Universalist General Assembly, which this year will be in Louisville, Kentucky. Berry will be joining thousands of Unitarian Universalists from around the continent on Thursday, June 20 at a Public Witness event calling for greater Environmental Justice in this country. In particular the goal is to raise aware about the dangers and impact of practices like mountaintop removal mining and horizontal fracking. The UUA website’s description of this event says, “in order to change how we get our energy, we must first use the energy within all of us to make a change.”
MEADVILLE, Pa. - Renowned author Wendell Berry will return to Allegheny
College on Friday, May 17 to open the second annual Loving the Land Through
Working Forests Conference. Conference
events are free and open to the public.
The Loving the
Land speakers' program featuring Berry begins at 7 p.m. in Ford Chapel, North
Main Street in Meadville near the center of the Allegheny College
In his interview with Moyers, Berry blamed many of today's ecological
problems on industrialization, unbridled capitalism and political
systems that favor wealthy corporations, which make big political
contributions to reap far bigger returns in taxpayer subsidies and lax
"There's no justification for the permanent
destruction of the world," Berry said. "It's not economically
defensible. It's not defensible in any terms."
Berry, 78, lamented
that the three and a half decades since his book's publication have
been marked by further environmental degradation, from strip mining and
soil erosion to water pollution and accelerating climate change.
"It's mighty hard right now to think of anything that's precious that is not in danger," he said.
The conference, sponsored by the Berry Center, builds off Berry’s
seminal 1977 book, “The Unsettling of America,” which offered a vision
of land stewardship and thinking locally about food production and
“We’re trying to get beyond that book” said Berry, a Kentucky farmer and author. “I hope we do.”
conference drew 300 people to the Brown Hotel. It concludes Saturday at
St. Catharine College in Washington County, with appearances by Berry,
Bill Moyers, Bill McKibben and others. The conference is sold out.
blessed we all are to have the opportunity to honor such an exceptional
Kentuckian,” said Christy Brown, a board member of the Berry Center.
“He’s a prophet.”
On a warm day last summer on his farm in Henry County, Wendell Berry
sat on the front porch, and read what has become perhaps the quote he’s
best known for.
“Eating is an agricultural act,” he read.
This is a quote that Berry doesn’t particularly like repeating.
suppose it’s the sentence I’ve written that’s been most quoted out of
context, in isolation,” he said. “At first I was flattered by this, but
now I’m dismayed by it. Because out of context, it strikes me as a
rather stupid oversimplification, like all bumper stickers. And I have
never been by intention, a composer of bumper stickers.”
past five decades, Berry’s written countless books, essays and poems,
and he's kept a farm. Two years ago, a center was founded in his name to
continue his family’s work in agriculture, and next weekend the center
will hold its first conference in his honor.
The conference will celebrate the 35th anniversary of Berry’s book, The Unsettling of America, and introduce the Berry Center’s work to the public.