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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
14295 The peace of wild things Comments and analysis of The peace of wild things by Wendell Berry 114 Comments
10083 Do not be ashamed Comments and analysis of Do not be ashamed by Wendell Berry 3 Comments
8798 The Country Of Marriage Comments and analysis of The Country Of Marriage by Wendell Berry 2 Comments
8507 Sabbaths 2001 Comments and analysis of Sabbaths 2001 by Wendell Berry 1 Comment
8197 Like The Water
7314 What We Need Is Here Comments and analysis of What We Need Is Here by Wendell Berry 51 Comments
6149 In this World
5551 The Silence
4968 A Warning To My Readers Comments and analysis of A Warning To My Readers by Wendell Berry 1 Comment
4876 Woods Comments and analysis of Woods by Wendell Berry 1 Comment
4829 For The Future
4777 The Wish to be Generous Comments and analysis of The Wish to be Generous by Wendell Berry 41 Comments
4661 A Meeting Comments and analysis of A Meeting by Wendell Berry 3 Comments
4242 The Lilies
3867 Ripening Comments and analysis of Ripening by Wendell Berry 13 Comments
3182 Testament
2730 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 21 Comments
2320 1991-II
537 Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front Comments and analysis of Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front by Wendell Berry 86 Comments
512 The Real Work Comments and analysis of The Real Work by Wendell Berry 1 Comment
478 Water
388 The Man Born to Farming Comments and analysis of The Man Born to Farming by Wendell Berry 2 Comments
126 1991-I Comments and analysis of 1991-I by Wendell Berry 1 Comment


Books by Wendell Berry
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