The University Press of Kentucky

Culture of the Land

Norman Wirzba

Published by: The University Press of Kentucky

Go

Browse Books in Series:

Culture of the Land

previous PREV 1 2 3 NEXT next

Results 11-20 of 24

:
:
Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

Growing Stories from India

Religion and the Fate of Agriculture

A. Whitney Sanford. foreword by Vandana Shiva

The costs of industrial agriculture are astonishing in terms of damage to the environment, human health, animal suffering, and social equity, and the situation demands that we expand our ecological imagination to meet this crisis. In response to growing dissatisfaction with the existing food system, farmers and consumers are creating alternate models of production and consumption that are both sustainable and equitable. In Growing Stories from India: Religion and the Fate of Agriculture, author A. Whitney Sanford uses the story of the deity Balaram and the Yamuna River as a foundation for discussing the global food crisis and illustrating the Hindu origins of agrarian thought. By employing narrative as a means of assessing modern agriculture, Sanford encourages us to reconsider our relationship with the earth. Merely creating new stories is not enough—she asserts that each story must lead to changed practices. Growing Stories from India demonstrates that conventional agribusiness is only one of many options and engages the work of modern agrarian luminaries to explore how alternative agricultural methods can be implemented.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

Learning Native Wisdom

What Traditional Cultures Teach Us about Subsistence, Sustainability, and Spirituality

Gary Holthaus

Scientific evidence has made it abundantly clear that the world's population can no longer continue its present rate of consuming and despoiling the planet's limited natural resources. Scholars, activists, politicians, and citizens worldwide are promoting the idea of sustainability, or systems and practices of living that allow a community to maintain itself indefinitely. Despite increased interest in sustainability, its popularity alone is insufficient to shift our culture and society toward more stable practices. Gary Holthaus argues that sustainability is achievable but is less a set of practices than the result of a healthy worldview. Learning Native Wisdom: Reflections on Subsistence, Sustainability, and Spirituality examines several facets of societies -- cultural, economic, agricultural, and political -- seeking insights into the ability of some societies to remain vibrant for thousands of years, even in extremely adverse conditions and climates. Holthaus looks to Eskimo and other Native American peoples of Alaska for the practical wisdom behind this way of living. Learning Native Wisdom explains why achieving a sustainable culture is more important than any other challenge we face today. Although there are many measures of a society's progress, Holthaus warns that only a shift away from our current culture of short-term abundance, founded on a belief in infinite economic growth, will represent true advancement. In societies that value the longevity of people, culture, and the environment, subsistence and spirituality soon become closely allied with sustainability.Holthaus highlights the importance of language as a reflection of shared cultural values, and he shows how our understanding of the very word subsistence illustrates his argument. In a culture of abundance, the term implies deprivation and insecurity. However, as Holthaus reminds us, "All cultures are subsistence cultures." Our post-Enlightenment consumer-based societies obscure or even deny our absolute dependence on soil, air, sunlight, and water for survival. This book identifies spirituality as a key component of meaningful cultural change, a concept that Holthaus defines as the recognition of the invisible connections between people, their neighbors, and their surroundings. For generations, native cultures celebrated and revered these connections, fostering a respect for past, present, and future generations and for the earth itself.Ultimately, Holthaus illustrates how spirituality and the concept of subsistence can act as powerful guiding forces on the path to global sustainability. He examines the perceptions of cultures far more successful at long-term survival than our own and describes how we might use their wisdom to overcome the sustainability crisis currently facing humanity.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

Living Sustainably

What Intentional Communities Can Teach Us about Democracy, Simplicity, and Nonviolence

A. Whitney Sanford

In light of concerns about food and human health, fraying social ties, economic uncertainty, and rampant consumerism, some people are foregoing a hurried, distracted existence and embracing a mindful way of living. Intentional residential communities across the United States are seeking the freedom to craft their own societies and live out Mohandas K. Gandhi's vision of democracy based on the values of nonviolence, self-sufficiency, equality, and voluntary simplicity.

Over the course of four years, A. Whitney Sanford visited ecovillages, cohousing communities, and Catholic worker houses and farms where individuals are striving to "be the change they wish to see in the world." In this book, she reveals the solutions that these communities have devised for sustainable living while highlighting the specific choices and adaptations that they have made to accommodate local context and geography. She examines their methods of reviving and adapting traditional agrarian skills, testing alternate building materials for their homes, and developing local governments that balance group needs and individual autonomy.

Living Sustainably is a teachable testament to the idea that new cultures based on justice and sustainability are attainable in many ways and in countless homes and communities. Sanford's engaging and insightful work demonstrates that citizens can make a conscious effort to subsist in a more balanced, harmonious world.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

The Mother of All Arts

Agrarianism and the Creative Impulse

Gene Logsdon

When Gene Logsdon realized that he experienced the same creative joy from farming as he did from writing, he suspected that agriculture itself was a form of art. Thus began his search for the origins of the artistic impulse in the agrarian lifestyle. The Mother of All Arts is the culmination of Logsdon’s journey, his account of friendships with farmers and artists driven by the urge to create. He chronicles his long relationship with Wendell Berry and discovers the playful humor of several new agrarian writers. He reveals insights gleaned from conversations with Andrew Wyeth and his family of artists. Through his association with musicians such as Willie Nelson and his involvement with Farm Aid, Logsdon learns how music—blues, jazz, country, and even rock ’n’ roll—is also rooted in agriculture. Logsdon sheds new light on the work of rural painters, writers, and musicians and suggests that their art could be created only by those who work intimately with the land. Unlike the gritty realism or abstract expressionism often favored by contemporary critics, agrarian art evokes familiar feelings of community and comfort. Most important, Logsdon convincingly demonstrates that diminishing the connection between art and nature lessens the social and aesthetic value of both. The Mother of All Arts explores these cultural connections and traces the development of a new agrarian culture that Logsdon believes will eventually replace the model brought about by the industrial revolution. Humorous and introspective, the book is neither conventional cultural criticism nor traditional art criticism. It is a unique, lively meditation on the nature and purpose of art—and on the life well-lived—by one of the truly original voices of rural America.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

Narnia and the Fields of Arbol

The Environmental Vision of C. S. Lewis

Matthew T. Dickerson and David O'Hara

The remarkable breadth of C. S. Lewis’s (1898–1963) work is nearly as legendary as the fantastical tales he so inventively crafted. A variety of themes emerge in his literary output, which spans the genres of nonfiction, fantasy, science fiction, and children’s literature, but much of the scholarship examining his work focuses on religion or philosophy. Overshadowed are Lewis’s views on nature and his concern for environmental stewardship, which are present in most of his work. In Narnia and the Fields of Arbol: The Environmental Vision of C. S. Lewis, authors Matthew Dickerson and David O’Hara illuminate this important yet overlooked aspect of the author’s visionary work. Dickerson and O’Hara go beyond traditional theological discussions of Lewis’s writing to investigate themes of sustainability, stewardship of natural resources, and humanity’s relationship to wilderness. The authors examine the environmental and ecological underpinnings of Lewis’s work by exploring his best-known works of fantasy, including the seven books of the Chronicles of Narnia and the three novels collectively referred to as the Space Trilogy. Taken together, these works reveal Lewis’s enduring environmental concerns, and Dickerson and O’Hara offer a new understanding of his pioneering style of fiction. An avid outdoorsman, Lewis deftly combined an active imagination with a deep appreciation for the natural world. Narnia and the Fields of Arbol, the first book-length work on the subject, explores the marriage of Lewis’s environmental passion with his skill as a novelist and finds the author’s legacy to have as much in common with the agrarian environmentalism of Wendell Berry as it does with the fantasy of J. R. R. Tolkien. In an era of increasing concern about deforestation, climate change, and other environmental issues, Lewis’s work remains as pertinent as ever. The widespread adaption of his work in film lends credence to the author’s staying power as an influential voice in both fantastical fiction and environmental literature. With Narnia and the Fields of Arbol, Dickerson and O’Hara have written a timely work of scholarship that offers a fresh perspective on one of the most celebrated authors in literary history.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

Religion and Sustainable Agriculture

World Spiritual Traditions and Food Ethics

edited by Todd LeVasseur, Pramod Parajuli, and Norman Wirzba. foreword by Vandana Shiva

Distinct practices of eating are at the heart of many of the world's faith traditions -- from the Christian Eucharist to Muslim customs of fasting during Ramadan to the vegetarianism and asceticism practiced by some followers of Hinduism and Buddhism. What we eat, how we eat, and whom we eat with can express our core values and religious devotion more clearly than verbal piety.

In this wide-ranging collection, eminent scholars, theologians, activists, and lay farmers illuminate how religious beliefs influence and are influenced by the values and practices of sustainable agriculture. Together, they analyze a multitude of agricultural practices for their contributions to healthy, ethical living and environmental justice. Throughout, the contributors address current critical issues, including global trade agreements, indigenous rights to land and seed, and the effects of postcolonialism on farming and industry. Covering indigenous, Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, Muslim, and Jewish perspectives, this groundbreaking volume makes a significant contribution to the study of ethics and agriculture.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

The Soil and Health

A Study of Organic Agriculture

Albert Howard

During his years as a scientist working for the British government in India, Sir Albert Howard conceived of and refined the principles of organic agriculture. Howard's The Soil and Health became a seminal and inspirational text in the organic movement soon after its publication in 1945. The Soil and Health argues that industrial agriculture, emergent in Howard's era and dominant today, disrupts the delicate balance of nature and irrevocably robs the soil of its fertility. Howard's classic treatise links the burgeoning health crises facing crops, livestock, and humanity to this radical degradation of the Earth's soil. His message -- that we must respect and restore the health of the soil for the benefit of future generations -- still resonates among those who are concerned about the effects of chemically enhanced agriculture.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

Stolen Harvest

The Hijacking of the Global Food Supply

Vandana Shiva

For the farmer, the seed is not merely the source of future plants and food; it is a vehicle through which culture and history can be preserved and spread to future generations. For centuries, farmers have evolved crops and produced an incredible diversity of plants that provide life-sustaining nutrition. In India alone, the ingenuity of farmers has produced over 200,000 varieties of rice, many of which now line store shelves around the world. This productive tradition, however, is under attack as globalized, corporate regimes increasingly exploit intellectual property laws to annex these sustaining seeds and remove them from the public sphere.

In Stolen Harvest: The Hijacking of the Global Food Supply, Shiva explores the devastating effects of commercial agriculture and genetic engineering on the food we eat, the farmers who grow it, and the soil that sustains it. This prescient critique and call to action covers some of the most pressing topics of this ongoing dialogue, from the destruction of local food cultures and the privatization of plant life, to unsustainable industrial fish farming and safety concerns about corporately engineered foods. The preeminent agricultural activist and scientist of a generation, Shiva implores the farmers and consumers of the world to make a united stand against the genetically modified crops and untenable farming practices that endanger the seeds and plants that give us life.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

The Vandana Shiva Reader

Vandana Shiva. foreword by Wendell Berry

"Her great virtue as an advocate is that she is not a reductionist. Her awareness of the complex connections among economy and nature and culture preserves her from oversimplification. So does her understanding of the importance of diversity." -- Wendell Berry, from the foreword

Motivated by agricultural devastation in her home country of India, Vandana Shiva became one of the world's most influential and highly acclaimed environmental and antiglobalization activists. Her groundbreaking research has exposed the destructive effects of monocultures and commercial agriculture and revealed the links between ecology, gender, and poverty.

In The Vandana Shiva Reader, Shiva assembles her most influential writings, combining trenchant critiques of the corporate monopolization of agriculture with a powerful defense of biodiversity and food democracy. Containing up-to-date data and a foreword by Wendell Berry, this essential collection demonstrates the full range of Shiva's research and activism, from her condemnation of commercial seed technology, genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and the international agriculture industry's dependence on fossil fuels, to her tireless documentation of the extensive human costs of ecological deterioration.

This important volume illuminates Shiva's profound understanding of both the perils and potential of our interconnected world and calls on citizens of all nations to renew their commitment to love and care for soil, seeds, and people.

Access Restricted no This search result is for a Book

The Violence of the Green Revolution

Third World Agriculture, Ecology, and Politics

Vandana Shiva

The Green Revolution has been heralded as a political and technological achievement -- unprecedented in human history. Yet in the decades that have followed it, this supposedly nonviolent revolution has left lands ravaged by violence and ecological scarcity. A dedicated empiricist, Vandana Shiva takes a magnifying glass to the effects of the Green Revolution in India, examining the devastating effects of monoculture and commercial agriculture and revealing the nuanced relationship between ecological destruction and poverty. In this classic work, the influential activist and scholar also looks to the future as she examines new developments in gene technology.

previous PREV 1 2 3 NEXT next

Results 11-20 of 24

:
:

Return to Browse All Series on Project MUSE

Series

Culture of the Land

Content Type

  • (24)

Access

  • You have access to this content
  • Free sample
  • Open Access
  • Restricted Access