Clearing Land

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Click for availability and more information Clearing Land, by Jane Brox

In America, individual dreams have origins in farming. Cultivators of earth, Jefferson said, are the most valuable citizens, vigorous, independent, virtuous. Jane Brox, child of an immigrant family farm, agrees. Clearing Land is a poetic memoir and early farming history. She notes the style clashes between the fenced-in Pilgrims and the open space Indians. And how those non-agrarian immigrants were taught survival by means of the corn crop. Brox writes also of sheep pastures in pre-whaling Nantucket, where she spent solitary years honing her fine writing skills. Expanding on her life on a New England coastal apple farm, she explores the growth of land use, notably granite mining as the textile trade grew, and the ensuing landscape changes. There's a bit of bittersweet in her state-of-the-farm analysis. For a small farm to survive today, she says it must also be an "agrotourist destination." Stirring and elucidating.

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This page contains a single entry published on March 8, 2005 5:14 PM.

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