The Unsettling of America: Culture and Agriculture

( 3 )

Overview


Since its publication by Sierra Club Books in 1977, The Unsettling of America has been recognized as a classic of American letters. In it, Wendell Berry argues that good farming is a cultural development and spiritual discipline. Today’s agribusiness, however, takes farming out of its cultural context and away from families. As a result, we as a nation are more estranged from the land—from the intimate knowledge, love, and care of it.
Sadly, as Berry notes in his Afterword to ...
See more details below
Paperback (Revised Edition)
$10.73
BN.com price
(Save 23%)$13.95 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (25) from $5.44   
  • New (15) from $8.35   
  • Used (10) from $5.44   
Sending request ...

Overview


Since its publication by Sierra Club Books in 1977, The Unsettling of America has been recognized as a classic of American letters. In it, Wendell Berry argues that good farming is a cultural development and spiritual discipline. Today’s agribusiness, however, takes farming out of its cultural context and away from families. As a result, we as a nation are more estranged from the land—from the intimate knowledge, love, and care of it.
Sadly, as Berry notes in his Afterword to this third edition, his arguments and observations are more relevant than ever. We continue to suffer loss of community, the devaluation of human work, and the destruction of nature under an economic system dedicated to the mechanistic pursuit of products and profits. Although “this book has not had the happy fate of being proved wrong,” Berry writes, there are good people working “to make something comely and enduring of our life on this earth.” Wendell Berry is one of those people, writing and working, as ever, with passion, eloquence, and conviction.

Berry's personal, dramatic inquiry into the way in which we use the land that sustains us. Berry explores the roots of many of our attitudes.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780871568779
  • Publisher: Sierra Club Books
  • Publication date: 11/28/2004
  • Series: Paperback Library Series
  • Edition description: Revised Edition
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 246
  • Sales rank: 91,573
  • Product dimensions: 5.32 (w) x 8.04 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Wendell Berry - writer, poet, teacher, naturalist, and farmer - is the author of many notable works, including The Gift of Good Land; Sex, Economy, Freedom and Community; and Fidelity. He and his family live - and farm - in Port Royal, Kentucky.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Ch. 1 The Unsettling of America 3
Ch. 2 The Ecological Crisis as a Crisis of Character 17
Ch. 3 The Ecological Crisis as a Crisis of Agriculture 27
Ch. 4 The Agricultural Crisis as a Crisis of Culture 39
Ch. 5 Living in the Future: The "Modern" Agricultural Ideal 51
Ch. 6 The Use of Energy 81
Ch. 7 The Body and the Earth 97
Ch. 8 Jefferson, Morrill, and the Upper Crust 143
Ch. 9 Margins 171
Notes 225
Afterword to the Third Edition 229
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2008

    A reviewer

    When Wendell Berry first published The Unsettling of America in 1977, it was in his mind both a criticism of the ¿agribusiness¿ boom of that time '¿big farming¿', and a call for a rethinking, a reevaluation of where we as a people were headed¿not just agriculturally, but culturally, too. Berry felt the need to articulate not only why the boom of ¿agribusiness¿ was wrong-headed but also what this boom represented: the people of this country are isolating themselves in every way possible they are isolating themselves from their communities, from local farms, from the land, from common and moral sense, and from each other. Despite his views, though, the book was written with as much anger and worry in Berry¿s mind as hope. Now, in an edition published nearly 20 years after the original, Berry has added both a preface and an afterword that address his since-altered view of both the culture and of his book¿s relationship to it. In Berry¿s mind, The Unsettling of America is not anymore a criticism of culture and agriculture, but rather a review, a commentary, from the perspective of someone who recognizes the decline of this country¿agriculturally and culturally¿knows why this has happened, and knows it is irreversible. Berry recognizes that in modern times there are people still around who would do this country good they see the value of community and labor, of a symbiotic relationship with the land. But, he also recognizes that these people will always be overpowered by those who see the ¿easy, quickly profitable¿ way to do things. He calls this dichotomy the ¿exploiter vs. nurturer.¿ ¿Exploiters¿ make up the majority of our society. They seek ease and efficiency, money, profit, and only look at things¿including land¿in terms of what it can do for them and how quickly it can do these things for them. The ¿nurturer¿ on the other hand, is concerned with ¿health,¿ not just of farms and land, but of community, family, and self. To be ¿nurturer¿ requires persistence, humility, discipline, and patience¿qualities that most people nowadays lack, or have learned how to circumnavigate. Knowing that the ¿exploiters¿ outnumber the ¿nurturers¿ in this country is troublesome for Berry, who asserts that people make up the society that they live in the condition of society, in any regard, is the direct result of the thoughts, actions, and attitudes of the people that comprise it. Although the foundation of his ¿individual responsibility¿ belief is not new 'it is rooted in the principals of Jeffersonian Democracy', it provides a meaningful and sound backdrop for discussing the reasons why our society is losing its sense of community, its sense of responsibility to the land, its balance¿people, through inaction, denial, self-interest, or indifference, have allowed it to happen, and make no efforts to remedy it. Even harmful government policies or programs could be altered or abolished, Berry notes, if people on an individual level saw the need for such action and then came together to accomplish it¿if there were more ¿nurturers¿ around. The more ¿exploiters¿ in a society, the more the society will become exploitive the more it will isolate itself from community and culture in search of quick and profitable gratification and gain. And our society is rife with ¿exploiters.¿ While it seems at first that The Unsettling of America is a book about the decline, disintegration, and isolation of agriculture and its relationship to culture, it is actually a book about decline, disintegration, and isolation of many things. It is about the breakdown of agriculture and its estrangement from culture, the disbandment of communities, human disconnection from labor, food production, resource harvesting and utilization, and even the breakdown of ourselves¿the casual 'and harmful' way we now view our health and even our sex lives. Berry writes with such clarity and sense of purpose that one almost expects him to propose his solutions to these proble

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 24, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)