[permaculture] Fwd: Re: [SANET-MG] historical development of organic agriculture
Lawrence F. London, Jr.
lflj at bellsouth.net
Tue Nov 2 15:50:14 EDT 2010
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [SANET-MG] historical development of organic agriculture
Date: Tue, 2 Nov 2010 10:10:58 -0700
From: Barry Lia <barrylia at COMCAST.NET>
To: SANET-MG at LISTS.IFAS.UFL.EDU
More kudos, Joel, for sharing your presentation.
I might mention another point about Lord Northbourne, as regards
biodynamics and these historical developments.
It is recognized that Northbourne first used the term "organic
farming" in contrast with chemical farming. The book Of the Land and
the Spirit is a collection of Northbourne essays (including excerpts
from Look to the Land) that is worth a look, if only for the Foreword
by Wendell Berry. Berry applauds Northbourne's incredibly prescient
treatment of the problems of modern agriculture in Look to the Land.
Berry writes of Northbourne, "In confronting industrial agriculture,
he saw that he was confronting a 'sickness' that was at once
spiritual, economic, and biological." Berry concludes, "As a critic
of agriculture, he aimed at wholeness of vision, and nobody has come
closer to achieving it."
As regards biodynamics, though Northbourne himself does not mention it
in Look to the Land, Northbourne's son points out in his introduction
to the collection of essays above that his father "ran both his garden
at Nourthbourne Court and the Home Farm according to the biodynamic
precepts for organic farming laid down by Rudolf Steiner..." (Mention
of Steiner and biodynamics was undoubtedly precluded by war with
Germany at the time and by Northbourne's "Traditionalist" religious
It must, then, be pointed out that Northbourne's concept of the "farm
as an organic whole," in particular, was undoubtedly inspired directly
by Steiner's biodynamic concept of "the farm individuality" (or "farm
organism," as it is often rendered), and it may be suggested that much
of the wholeness of vision of this organic farming pioneer was born
from his biodynamic outlook.
Barry Lia \ barrylia at comcast.net \ Seattle WA
On Oct 30, 2010, at 9:11 PM, Lawrence F. London, Jr. wrote:
On 10/30/2010 1:40 PM, Joel Gruver wrote:
> I spent the last 2 weeks talking about the historical development of organic agriculture
> in my Intro to Sustainable Ag class.
> here is a link to the slides that we discussed:
> http://www.yousendit.com/download/ZGJmUWVxUENGOFJFQlE9PQ (~ 5 Mb pdf file - only active for 1 week or 100 downloads)
That was quite a treat, Joel. You included excellent coverage of Biodynamics and the photos of Hunza farming and harvest
were....stunning! huge retaining walls and large fields with fruit trees. I have never seen pictures of mountainside
terraced farm fields that were that big. Those in Asia and South America for growing rice and other crops are very
different and usually on steeper slopes.
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