One writer who has influenced countless Americans, including me, turned 80 earlier this year. Wendell Berry has, in fact, been producing a variety of notable books for 50 years—volumes of nonfiction, fiction, and poetry. Moreover, he has been for decades a major crusader for such relevant matters in our time as sustainable agriculture, community commitment, and nature-based, spiritual-mystery-focused religious belief.
Berry was born in rural Henry County, Kentucky, in 1934. He studied at the University of Kentucky during the 1950s, earning B.A. and M.A. degrees in English, and he later taught there as well. In the mid-1960s he returned to his native place, near Lexington, to farm and to write where his family had lived for generations.
He is very well known for his critique of modern agriculture—a field which now regards our industrial economy as its model and consequently damages the health of the land, destroying rural culture in the process. Berry’s searing critique has been presented in such books as “A Continuous Harmony” (1972), “The Unsettling of America” (1977), and “The Gift of Good Land” (1981), as well as in talks that he has given in many states.
Read more at The McDonough County Voice