“If you’re feeling despairing, this book is the tonic. This slim volume should be read aloud at kitchen tables and over the radio until it becomes a national legend—a legend we might then try to live up to.”
“This big-hearted parable about a land and people restored is sure to lift the spirits of anyone who cares about the blooming earth.”
Scott Russell Sanders
“This book is a work of social, ecological, and moral imagination—a reminder that we do not live in the only or the best possible world.”
“This, then, is a book of two visions: one of disease, one of health. Or to put it another way, Gene Logsdon has had the generosity and the courage to allow a vision of Hell to call forth in himself its natural opposite.”
Gene Logsdon’s The Man Who Created Paradise is a message of hope at a time when the very concept of earth stewardship is under attack. The fable, inspired by a true story, tells how Wally Spero looked at one of the bleakest places in America—a raw and barren strip-mined landscape—and saw in it his escape from the drudgery of his factory job. He bought an old bulldozer and used the machine to carve patiently, acre by acre, a beautiful little farm out of a seemingly worthless wasteland.
Wally’s story is a charming distillation of the themes that the late, beloved Gene Logsdon returned to again and again in his many books and hundreds of articles. Environmental restoration is the task of our time. The work of healing our land begins in our own backyards and farms, in our neighborhoods and our regions. Humans can turn the earth into a veritable paradise—if they really want to.
Noted photographer Gregory Spaid retraced the trail that Logsdon traveled when he was inspired to write The Man Who Created Paradise. His photographs evoke the same yearning for wholeness, for ties to land and community, that infuses the fable’s poetic prose.
Gene Logsdon (1931–2016) was the author of more than thirty books and countless magazine articles on agrarian issues including small-scale farming and sustainable living. He is the author of four Swallow Press/Ohio University Press books: All Flesh Is Grass: The Pleasures and Promises of Pasture Farming, The Man Who Created Paradise: A Fable, Wyeth People, and The Last of the Husbandmen: A Novel of Farming Life. More info →
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The second edition of To Kill a Man’s Pride builds on the success of the previous edition of this anthology of South African short stories by retaining most of stories, but also featuring more women writers and new male voice, to make it more representative. The milieu remains unambiguously South African, with some stories set in rural areas such as the village, farm or dorp, and others in urban centers such as the big city, suburb or township.
From a leper colony in India to an American research station on the Antarctic Peninsula, from the back rooms of the White House to the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, Evidence of My Existence tells a unique and riveting story of seventeen years spent racing from one photo assignment to the next. It is also a story of photojournalism and the consequences of obsessive wanderlust. When the book opens, Jim Lo Scalzo is a blur to his wife, her remarkable tolerance wearing thin.
In 1898 men and women from all over the world converged on Alaska. Gold had been discovered. In the Yukon Territory, all winter long eager gold seekers struggled over the mountain passes connecting Canada with the United States. A small group of photographers chronicled this epic, creating images of men and women laboring through blinding snowstorms over the windswept, ice-covered mountains. One of that group was a young Swedish immigrant by the name of P. E. Larson.
It’s 2047 in Dayton, Ohio. In response to food and water shortages, the U.S. government has developed an enormous, and powerfully successful, agricultural area—the “Heartland Grid”—just north of the city. In the meantime, in the wake of declining American power a multinational force has established itself in Cleveland. Behind these quickly shifting alliances lies a troubling yet tantalizing question: what will the American future look like?