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The Contrary Farmer


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The Contrary Farmer

By  Gene Logsdon


Reading about farming has its own vicarious pleasures too, even for someone who actually lives in the country. The more practical the book the better I like it, especially if it gives me a glimpse of how rural life used to look--or how it ought to look. So here are two places to start. The first is Gene Logsdon's "The Contrary Farmer" (Chelsea Green). Logsdon is full of good, practical sense and he is the best--and most plain-spoken--philosopher of rural living I know. The other book is harder to find--or will be until April, when it is reissued by Chelsea Green. It is William Cobbett's "Cottage Economy," which was published in 1822 and was meant to teach its readers what had been forgotten about rural living in a single generation.

Verlyn Klinkenborg, the New York Times

Gene Logsdon has become something of a rabble-rouser in progressive farm circles, stirring up debates and controversies with his popular New Farm magazine column, "The Contrary Farmer." One of Logsdon's principle contrarities is the opinion that--popular images of the vanishing American farmer, notwithstanding--greater numbers of people in the U.S. will soon be growing and raising a greater share of their own food than at any time since the last century. Instead of vanishing, more and more farmers will be cottage farming, part-time.

This detailed and personal account of how Logsdon's family uses the art and science of agriculture to achieve a reasonably happy and ecologically sane way of life in an example for all who seek a sustainable lifestyle. In The Contrary Farmer, Logsdon offers the tried-and-true, practical advice of a manual for the cottage farmer, as well as the subtler delights of a meditation in praise of work and pleasure. The Contrary Farmer will give its readers tools and tenets, but also hilarious commentaries and beautiful evocations of the Ohio countryside that Logsdon knows as his place in the universe.

About the Author

Gene Logsdon

Gene Logsdon farms in Upper Sandusky, Ohio. He is one of the clearest and most original voices of rural America. He has published more than two dozen books; his Chelsea Green books include Small-Scale Grain Raising (2nd Edition), Living at Nature\'s Pace, The Contrary Farmer\'s Invitation to Gardening, Good Spirits, and The Contrary Farmer. He writes a popular blog at OrganicToBe.org, is a regular contributor to Farming magazine and The Draft Horse Journal, and writes an award-winning weekly column in the Carey, Ohio Progressor Times.

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