Wendell Berry and The New York Times
An Interview with Laura Dunn about Her Wendell Berry Film

Christianity Today on "The Seer: A Portrait of Wendell Berry"

The Seer's subtitle is “A Portrait of Wendell Berry,” but that's not strictly accurate. Berry (who is 81) only appears on screen in old photographs and footage from the 1977 debate between him and former Secretary of Agriculture Earl Butz. He speaks to director Laura Dunn throughout the film, though, and his wife Tanya and daughter Mary appear as well, along with a number of farmers from Henry County, Kentucky, where the Berrys have made their home for a long time.

So we do learn about his life. But The Seer is only sort of biographical, and that seems like at least partly Berry's doing. Just last week, when asked in The New York Times's “By the Book” feature whom he'd want to write his life story, Berry replied, “A horrible thought. Nobody. As the only person who ever has lived my life, I know that most of it can never be documented, is beyond writing and beyond words.”

Luckily, The Seer—which premiered in competition at SXSW on March 12 and was directed, edited, and produced by Dunn—has a much grander goals than hagiography.

Read the complete article by Alissa Wilkinson at Christianity Today.

Comments

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Hi Br. Tom,

Thanks for your work here and the new look for the site is great. I'm wondering if the Wendell Berry mailing list is still active. I would like to contact other people who read his work in or near Seattle.

Hi, Robert. Glad you like the new look. I shut down the email list a few months ago. Yahoo was becoming more & more unmanageable, and people were getting exposed to all kinds of rotten spam. So that came to a quick end. If you are in the Seattle area, you might try to connect with the folks involved there with Tilth (http://www.seattletilth.org). They are very big on Mr. Berry. All the best to you.

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