The Art of the Common-place: The Agrarian Essays of Wendell Berry

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Counterpoint, 2002 - Social Science - 330 pages
52 Reviews
When Nathan Coulter first appeared in 1960, no one could have known that this exquisite coming-of-age tale was introducing us to one of our most distinctive fictional communities: Port William, Kentucky. Remembering (1988), centers on Andy Catlett, who has lost his right hand to a corn-picking machine. A World Lost (1996) is set in the summer of 1944, when Andy, nine years old, is stunned by the news of his Uncle Andrew's murder. Wendell Berry is the sort of writer who changes people's lives, and in his Three Short Novels his talent is abundantly clear.

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Review: The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

User Review  - Ryan Boomershine - Goodreads

Berry is an easily-misunderstood, agrarian contrarian. He is a prophet without honor in his own country. I am quite appreciative of his fiction work but do though have a hard time plowing through his ... Read full review

Review: The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

User Review  - Mike - Goodreads

This collection of Wendell Berry's essays keeps plowing the same ground. And, while I found it a bit tedious at times, the pedagogical iterations extolling the virtues of grounding a life in the local ... Read full review

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About the author (2002)

Wendell Berry The prolific poet, novelist, and essayist Wendell Berry is a fifth-generation native of north central Kentucky. Berry taught at Stanford University; traveled to Italy and France on a Guggenheim Fellowship; and taught at New York University and the University of Kentucky, Lexington, before moving to Henry County. Berry owns and operates Lanes Landing Farm, a small, hilly piece of property on the Kentucky River. He embraced full-time farming as a career, using horses and organic methods to tend the land. Harmony with nature in general, and the farming tradition in particular, is a central theme of Berry's diverse work. As a poet, Berry gained popularity within the literary community. Collected Poems, 1957-1982, was particularly well-received. Novels and short stories set in Port William, a fictional town paralleling his real-life home town of Port Royal further established his literary reputation. The Memory of Old Jack, Berry's third novel, received Chicago's Friends of American Writers Award for 1975. Berry reached his broadest audience and attained his greatest popular acclaim through his essays. The Unsettling of America: Culture and Agriculture is a springboard for contemporary environmental concerns. In his life as well as his art, Berry has advocated a responsible, contextual relationship with individuals in a local, agrarian economy.

Norman Wirzba (Ph.D., Loyola University Chicago) is research professor of theology, ecology and rural life at Duke Divinity School. He holds memberships in the American Academy of Religion, the Society for Continental Philosophy and Theology and the International Association for Environmental Philosophy. Wirzba is the author ofFood and Faith (Cambridge), Living the Sabbath (Cambridge) and The Paradise of God (Oxford) as well as numerous reviews and articles, including "Agrarianism After Modernity: An Opening for Grace" in After Modernity? Secularity, Globalization, and the Re-Enchantment of the World (Baylor).

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