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Biography of Wendell Berry

Wendell Berry

Wendell Berry (1934 - Present)

Wendell Berry (born August 5, 1934) is a United States poet, novelist, essayist, philosopher and farmer. His most well known book, The Unsettling of America, provides a classic critique of industrial agriculture which is foundational to today's agrarianism.

Berry was born in Henry County, Kentucky in 1934, the first of four children born to John and Virginia Berry. His father was a tobacco farmer, and as a young man Berry wanted to farm tobacco as well.

He attended secondary school at Millersburg Military Institute, and then pursued a B.A. in English at the University of Kentucky at Lexington. In 1957 he completed a Masterís degree in English, also at the University of Kentucky; that same year, he married Tanya Amyx.

In 1958 Berry received a Wallace Stegner Fellowship, which he used to study creative writing at Stanford University. In 1960 he and Tanya returned to the 250 acre (1 km≤) Berry family farm.

After being granted a Guggenheim fellowship, Berry took his family to Europe in 1961. In 1965 he returned to Kentucky, where he taught for several decades at the University of Kentucky. Today he lives and farms on the family farm at Port Royal, Kentucky, alongside the Kentucky River, not far from where it flows into the Ohio.

He is a prolific author, with fourteen books of poems, sixteen volumes of essays, and eleven novels and short story collections to his name. His writing is rooted in the notion that one's work ought to be connected with one's place. His poetic voice is simple and resonant, a kind of plainsong, usually similar in tone to Jane Kenyon but occasionally veering into the territory of Walt Whitman or Biblical prophets. Much of his nonfiction serves as defense of farming and the connectedness he perceives as inherent in rural life.


Biography by: This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License and uses material adapted in whole or in part from the Wikipedia article on Wendell Berry.


23 Poems written by Wendell Berry

The poems are by default sorted according to volume, but you can also choose to sort them alphabetically or by page views.

Volume | Alphabetically | [Page Views] | Comments | First Lines


Page ViewsPoemComments
14847 The peace of wild things Comments and analysis of The peace of wild things by Wendell Berry 134 Comments
10919 Do not be ashamed Comments and analysis of Do not be ashamed by Wendell Berry 4 Comments
9248 The Country Of Marriage Comments and analysis of The Country Of Marriage by Wendell Berry 2 Comments
8771 Like The Water Comments and analysis of Like The Water by Wendell Berry 1 Comment
8111 What We Need Is Here Comments and analysis of What We Need Is Here by Wendell Berry 266 Comments
6662 In this World
5847 The Silence
5591 Woods Comments and analysis of Woods by Wendell Berry 1 Comment
5452 A Warning To My Readers Comments and analysis of A Warning To My Readers by Wendell Berry 2 Comments
5343 A Meeting Comments and analysis of A Meeting by Wendell Berry 3 Comments
5291 For The Future
5141 The Wish to be Generous Comments and analysis of The Wish to be Generous by Wendell Berry 50 Comments
4522 The Lilies
4213 Ripening Comments and analysis of Ripening by Wendell Berry 15 Comments
3541 Testament
2949 In A Motel Parking Lot, Thinking Of Dr. Williams Comments and analysis of In A Motel Parking Lot, Thinking Of Dr. Williams by Wendell Berry 26 Comments
2565 1991-II
2327 The Real Work Comments and analysis of The Real Work by Wendell Berry 1 Comment
2064 Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front Comments and analysis of Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front by Wendell Berry 109 Comments
1799 Water
1198 The Man Born to Farming Comments and analysis of The Man Born to Farming by Wendell Berry 5 Comments
381 Sabbaths 2001 Comments and analysis of Sabbaths 2001 by Wendell Berry 1 Comment
346 1991-I Comments and analysis of 1991-I by Wendell Berry 1 Comment


Books by Wendell Berry
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