Wendell Berry Burned Up By Coal

July 3, 2010

If one knows anything for certain about writer Wendell Berry, it is that he is a man of ideals and deeply held convictions. Throughout his long career spanning countless novels, short stories, poems, and essays Berry has written extensively about what he believes constitutes a life worth living. Key among Berry’s beliefs is the idea that life and land are interconnected and integral to happiness and well-being. The author, who is also a longtime farmer, is well known for his beliefs in the benefits (ecological, economic, spiritual) of an agrarian way of life, and has long argued that a return to a more agrarian-based culture is necessary for the health of our society. He is extraordinarily cautious, even wary, of much of modern technology and the threats it poses to humanity in terms of industrialization and environmental destruction. So it should come as little surprise to any thinking or reasoning person that Mr. Berry was a bit heated upon finding that the University of Kentucky (Berry’s alma mater and recipient of his enormous collection of personal archives) had decided to name its new athletic dorm the Wildcat Coal Lodge in a nod to the school’s coal industry donors. Continue reading “Wendell Berry Burned Up By Coal”

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