Death of a Farmer

He traveled the three miles to the mill 63 times during the 87th harvest of his life, his old International pulling the wagon my uncle filled with beans or corn. I don't know why he counted the trips; perhaps it helped pass the time and foc...

Food and Freedom

RINGOES, NJ. Isn’t it interesting how quickly speculation becomes conventional wisdom? Back in the fall, when we began to hear rumblings of economic catastrophe, things were a bit vague. Most agreed that something was wrong. Some argued tha...

No Wealth But Life

JEFFERSON COUNTY, KANSAS. William Allen White, the noted editorialist of Emporia, once named our shared home country America’s tenth muse—the muse of prophecy. If Kansas is muse, surely one of her prophets was Sockless Jerry Simpson, the ma...

The Human Meaning of Property

MT. AIRY, PHILADELPHIA. Before I say something rather abstract about concrete things, a few personal words about what (and who) lies behind these thoughts may be in order. The photo above is of the front porch that entered my mind when I wa...

A Note on Immigration

South Bend, IN. Back here, in the city where the St. Joseph River takes her perpetual turn for the worse, my family and I have come to pay our last respects to my wife’s mother, who passed away recently after four years of suffering f...

Patrimony And Autonomy

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS. I appreciated Professor Deneen’s discussion of the problem of free-riding, and I agree that ours is a precarious position, but I would suggest that it is also paradoxically the strongest position available inasmuch ...

Back to the Land Economy

Well, we are all localists here, watching our national economy stagger and moan.  Is there any room for a conversation about local economies? What would a local economy mean? One of the false notions Wendell Berry tries regularly to expose ...

Free Riding

Alexandria, VA A few nights ago in Washington D.C., Wendell Berry was among the speakers at what turned out to be a pep rally for opponents of global warming.  They struck me as an assemblage of D.C. cosmopolites, well festooned with iPhone...