Interview: Nate Schlueter on Wendell Berry
Wendell Berry contrasted to Occupy Dartmouth

Wendell Berry considered in "Environmental Imagination: The Food Movement and Climate Change"

In big ways, the modern food movement goes back to an eccentric, powerful, and often beautiful book by Wendell Berry, The Unsettling of America. Writing in 1977, as the first popular wave of environmental awareness and activism crested, Berry tied ecological destruction to the American food economy. In the move from diversified, small-scale agricultural to industrial production, he saw a larger decline in miniature: from integrated organic fertility to systems that import artificial fertilizer to the farm and discard rich manure as a pollutant, breaking (in Berry's phrase) one solution into two problems; from intimate knowledge of a piece of land and its species to the tunnel-vision ignorance of the industrially enabled, public subsidized ignorance of someone who produces of one thing, whether corn, wheat, or pork, in a radically simplified system; from respect for the hard but sometimes good work of farming to dislike, even contempt, of labor, which came with a willingness to make agricultural labor, in industrial poultry plants and slaughterhouses, as degrading as it has ever been.



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