A soulful, searching collection of essays that tackle the complexities of contemporary America from “the prophet of rural America” (New York Times).
From the war in Iraq to Hurricane Katrina to the political sniping engendered by Supreme Court nominations—contemporary American society is characterized by divisive anger, profound loss, and danger. Wendell Berry, “the prophet of rural America” (New York Times) and one of the country’s foremost cultural critics, responds with hope and intelligence in a series of essays that tackle the major questions of the day. Whose freedom are we considering when we speak of the free market or free enterprise? What is really involved in our national security? What is the price of ownership without affection? Berry answers in prose that shuns abstraction for clarity, coherence, and passion, giving us essays that may be the finest of his long career. “Everything in the book illumines.” —Booklist
“[Berry’s] poems, novels and essays . . . are probably the most sustained contemporary articulation of America’s agrarian, Jeffersonian ideal.” —Publishers Weekly
“Wendell Berry is one of those rare individuals who speaks to us always of responsibility, of the individual cultivation of an active and aware participation in the arts of life.” —The Bloomsbury Review