Cultivating an Ecological Conscience: Essays from a Farmer Philosopher

Overview

For more than thirty years, Frederick L. Kirschenmann has explored the ethical and practical principles of sustainable agriculture. An accomplished theologian, philosopher, and third-generation farmer, Kirschenmann is a dynamic leading voice in the dialogue about the challenges of modern agriculture.

Cultivating an Ecological Conscience: Essays from a Farmer Philosopher follows Kirschenmann's personal and professional evolution as a lifelong proponent of new agrarianism. ...

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Overview

For more than thirty years, Frederick L. Kirschenmann has explored the ethical and practical principles of sustainable agriculture. An accomplished theologian, philosopher, and third-generation farmer, Kirschenmann is a dynamic leading voice in the dialogue about the challenges of modern agriculture.

Cultivating an Ecological Conscience: Essays from a Farmer Philosopher follows Kirschenmann's personal and professional evolution as a lifelong proponent of new agrarianism. Together with agricultural economist Constance L. Falk, Kirschenmann has compiled a collection of his essential writings on farming, philosophy, and sustainability. In this fascinating blend of personal history, philosophical discourse, spiritual ruminations, and practical advice, Kirschenmann shares candid, valuable insights into the agricultural challenges facing the modern world and the necessity of achieving ecologically sound and responsible stewardship of the land.

Cultivating an Ecological Conscience follows the development of Kirschenmann's long and distinguished career, from childhood lessons learned on the family farm to his inventive approaches for addressing contemporary agrarian issues. More than a mere retrospective, these essays serve as an introduction to the life and work of an extraordinary agricultural thinker.

Though sustainability has been a concern for ages, modern farming practices typically value quantity over quality and profit over ecology, increasing the need for sustainable agriculture and natural cultivation methods. In Cultivating an Ecological Conscience, a modern-day agricultural pioneer addresses the complex challenges inherent in meeting the world's increasing food needs and the many environmental obstacles we must overcome.

"Folks who care about farming and the land will enjoy this book.... You can't go wrong!"--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign" --

"Describes food production as part of resurrection process, with death providing life a natural and theologically necessary part of creation's existence."--Land Stewardship Letter" --

"In a unique blend of personal history, philosophical discourse, spiritual ruminations, and practical advice, Kirschenmann interweaves his insights with discussion of contemporary agrarian topics."--University of Chicago Magazine" --

"An impressive analysis and reflection of the art and science of agricultural.... This work is a window into a life well-lived and deeply examined."--WFAN NEWS" --

"Lays out an agrarian philosophy that is part science, part faith, and part firsthand experience."--University of Chicago Magazine" --

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"More than a collection of writing that spans over three decades, this book is a treasure that should reside on a nerby shelf for ready reference for any person concerned about the future of food and the environment."--Journal of Sustainable Agriculture" --

"A unique read into why, what, and how an ecological revolution is needed... [Cultivating an Ecological Conscience is] accessible and appealing to the (academic) philosopher as well as the farmer reader and everyone in between."--Environmental Ethics" --

"[Writing of] the material world... technical ag fixes.... [and] the potentials of urban agriculture...seems doubtful we've heard the last of Fred."--Wapsipinicon Almanec" --

"This compilation of 37 essays describe the current state of agriculture and demonstrate that Kirschenmann -- organic farmer, agrarian and philosopher -- has both personal knowledge of natural farming practices and an understanding of the drawbacks of industrial agriculture."--Farmers Market Today" --

"Cultivating an Ecological Conscience is an absolutely essential read for all those unfamiliar with the direction of cutting edge agriculture and a positively uplifting read for all those who are already there and seeking ways to connect environmental concepts with the production of food in the twenty-first century."--Energy Bulletin" --

"Sprawling and magisterial, Frederick L. Kirschenmann's collection of essays... expresses an erudition that encompasses reflections on everything from the philosophical implications of castrating calves, to the unseen ecological threats of integrating biotechnology into the process of food production, to seriously considering the role of marketing for the small-time organic farmer." -- Tom Jacobs, New York Institute of Technology" --

"In Cultivating an Ecological Conscience, essays and lectures from a broad range of events, journals, and forums come together to form a remarkably cohesive whole."--Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development" --

"A text that should be read start to finish. Not because every sentence is first-rate, but because a story is told." --Agriculture and Human Values" --

"With beautiful language, a gentle tone yet strong voice is cultivated in the book that reawakens the senses and embodies the tasks Kirschenmann sets for the reader. -- Li An Phoa" -- Environmental Ethics

"Cultivating is a text that should be read start to finish...because a story is told. That narrative is one man's continuing journey towards a harmonic way of life with the biotic community...Kirschenmann continues to develop his own agroecological thought and this text might guide readers developing their own ecological consciousness." -- Robert J. Wengronowitz, Agricultural and Human Values

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813125787
  • Publisher: University Press of Kentucky
  • Publication date: 4/15/2010
  • Series: Culture of the Land Series
  • Pages: 420
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Frederick L. Kirschenmann, Distinguished Fellow at the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture in Ames, Iowa, and president of the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture at Pocantico Hills, New York, has published articles in many books including Farm Aid: A Song For America and Sustainable Agroecosystem Management. He lives in Ames, Iowa.

Constance L. Falk, professor of agricultural economics and agricultural business at New Mexico State University, has been published in the Journal of Food Distribution Research, HortTechnology, and the Journal of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Education. She lives in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

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