Thursday, September 15, 2005

Soil Husbandry Transcends Soil Science

From an article by Wendell Berry in Orion magazine:

“It has become clear that we have been running our fundamental economic enterprise by the wrong rules..."

“The farm and all concerns not immediately associated with production have disappeared from sight. The farmer too has vanished...”

“The result is utterly strange in human experience: farm families that buy everything they eat at the store...”

“Husbandry, which is not replaceable by science, nevertheless uses science, and corrects it too. It is the more comprehensive discipline. To reduce husbandry to science, in practice, is to transform agricultural "wastes" into pollutants, and to subtract perennials and grazing animals from the rotation of crops. Without husbandry, the agriculture of science and industry has served too well the purpose of the industrial economy in reducing the number of landowners and the self-employed. It has transformed the United States from a country of many owners to a country of many employees...”

“The effort of husbandry is partly scientific but it is entirely cultural; and a cultural initiative can exist only by becoming personal..."


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