Cultivating A Movement: Available at Bookstores Now!
No Comments since November 29th, 2011
Cultivating a Movement: An Oral History of Organic Farming and Sustainable Agriculture on California’s Central Coast is now available! This is the first oral history of organic farming and sustainable agriculture and features a wealth of inspirational and colorful stories documenting a synergistic community of farmers, farm advisors, activists, educators, researchers, policymakers, farmers’-market managers, food distributors, and other shapers of this dynamic movement on the Central California coast and beyond. It includes 27 inspirational and colorful stories that document the emergence of this movement from the confluence of several earlier movements of the 1960s and 1970s, including the environmental, anti-war, back-to-the-land, farmworkers, and co-operative living movements, as well as the developing sciences of ecology, agroecology, and integrated pest management. The book is based on a larger archive of oral histories released by the University of California Santa Cruz Library’s Regional History Project in 2010 (including interviews with Jered Lawson and Nancy Vail of Pie Ranch!). The complete archive of transcripts, audio clips, photographs, and other resources is available on the UCSC Library’s website at http://library.ucsc.edu/reg-hist/cultiv/home
A reading for the book will be held at Bookshop Santa Cruz on February 22, 2012 at 7pm.
The book is available at Bookshop Santa Cruz, Capitola Book Cafe, The Works in Pacific Grove, and through Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/Cultivating-Movement-Sustainable-Agriculture-Californias/dp/097233436X
If you find yourself depressed about the possibilities for positive change, pick up Cultivating a Movement and read a few stories told by people who have been devoting their lives to creating a sustainable food system in the heartland of agribusiness. As one of them says, to be a successful farmer “you have to have a need, a desire, perseverance, strength and insanity.” That goes for the whole lot of them. These are inspiring people.
—Joan Dye Gussow, author This Organic Life and Growing, Older.
Personal stories are always a wonderful way to learn about past events. The personal narratives of farmers, educators, researchers, artists and conservationists who were part of the evolution of sustainable agriculture and organic food and farming systems in California’s Central Coast—and reaching out to the rest of the country–are truly inspiring. Cultivating a Movement is a book everyone interested in the history of sustainable agriculture will want to read.
—Frederick Kirschenmann, author of Cultivating an Ecological Conscience: Essays From a Farmer-Philosopher.
Reading Cultivating a Movement is like sitting and listening to a bunch of Old Time Pioneers reconstruct the origins of the organics and sustainability movement. While lots of blind alleys were gone down and plenty of mistakes were made and are openly acknowledged, what characterizes the pioneers was their willingness to try different approaches, to experiment, and their ability to become part of a wide-ranging community while pursuing their individual goals. This book also demonstrates how a new food system requires pioneers in a host of fields: agriculture, distribution and marketing, scientific development and application, learning about consumers and the character of consumption, and how individual actors found their own roads in an emergent complex agrifood system. And it’s pleasurably good reading.
—Bill Friedland, Professor Emeritus of Community Studies and Sociology, UC Santa Cruz
Project Director, Interviewer, and Editor Irene Reti directs the Regional History Project at the UC Santa Cruz library, where she has worked as an editor and oral historian since 1989. She holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies and a Master’s in History from UC Santa Cruz. Interviewer and Editor Sarah Rabkin has taught in UC Santa Cruz’s writing program and environmental studies department for over twenty-five years. She holds a B.A. in Biology from Harvard University and a graduate certificate in Science Communication from UCSC. Interviewer Ellen Farmer has a B.A. in journalism from San Jose State University and a Master’s in public policy from the Panetta Institute at California State University, Monterey Bay with a specialization in issues in sustainable agriculture, particularly coffee growing.