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Although contemporary society seems to promote the values of individualism and mobility, this engrossing book is dedicated to the notion that human lives are enriched by participation in a social community that is integrated into the natural landscape of a particular place. The 34 contributors--who include David Ehrenfeld, Lynn R. Miller, Wendell Berry, Deborah Tall, David W. Orr, Robert Swann, and Susan Witt, as well as other philosophers, scientists, activists, economists, historians, farmers and ranchers, sociologists, theologians, and political scientists--offer an array of social and ecological perspectives on the nature of "community." The editors, William Vitek and Wes Jackson, contend that a deeper understanding of communities is critical for the health of the planet and the human spirit. They offer a compelling collection of new and classic writings--many in the form of personal narrative--that extend E. F. Schumacher's ideas about the importance of human scale and Aldo Leopold's concept of biotic citizenship. Proposing eloquent defenses of community life and practical suggestions for becoming connected to others and native to a place, the writers explore the loss of community, the philosophical foundations of communities, and the current renewal of community life.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780300069617
ISBN-10: 0300069618
Format: Paperback
(235mm x 156mm x 16mm)
Pages: 302
Imprint: Yale University Press
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publish Date: 2-Jan-1997
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - William Vitek

William Vitek is associate professor of philosophy at Clarkson University. He is active in promoting working landscapes, rural communities, and local economies in northern New York. Wes Jackson is director and cofounder of the Land Institute in Salina, Kansas, and recent recipient of a Pew Conservation Scholars award and a MacArthur Fellowship. He is currently engaged in revitalizing Matfield Green, an abandoned farm community in Kansas.