Tag: Local Culture
An imagination like his, fictions like his – born from affection – may not provide us with data or answers but may help us feel “somehow more substantial and less troubled, characters more permanent.” And they may show us how we can help the land we find underfoot become a beloved, well-cared-for place. Stewart’s book goes a long way towards helping us see the world, and its people, the way Stegner hoped we could.
Perhaps this, above all, is the work of nature writing: to bring the wild and the domestic together and to reveal the mystery at the heart of both. That Springer’s book consistently does this is enough to commend it as a constructive entry in this vexed genre.
By acquiring sufficient acreage, typically a minimum of 500 acres, ideas can be given the isolation they need to have a chance at succeeding, unmolested by the outside forces of the world. Coupled with the beauty of the land and the built environment, the “castle,” a true local culture and community can arise.
Over and against manifest follies that characterize American life in the first quarter of the twenty-first century there stands the wide-ranging work, keen and voluminous, of the historian and social critic Christopher Lasch.
Although the basic principle of widely distributed property may be known and competently grasped—it is a tune that in America had been played in a Jeffersonian key, after all—it is perhaps less firmly grasped that, on Belloc’s account, what capitalism had killed among men was in fact a Distributist society.