Kate's Reviews > Deeply Rooted: Unconventional Farmers in the Age of Agribusiness

Deeply Rooted by Lisa M. Hamilton
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's review
Mar 12, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: foodwriting, what-is-this-country-coming-to
Read in February, 2010

Beautifully written. I think it's worth picking up for the craftsmanship alone. But it's also a fascinating, clear-eyed and yet emotional look at how farming has changed in the United States, and how some family farms are still trying to find a place within this new landscape.

Hamilton takes us to meet a dairy farmer who believes that letting his cows out to pasture is not just an environmental good, but a spiritual necessity. We meet a New Mexico rancher struggling to preserve his family tradition of stewardship of the land. And we meet a family of organic farmers, cheerfully living by their own standards amidst a community that is hostile to their ideas -- even as agribusiness backs the town and neighborhing farmers into an ever-tightening corner.

I rooted for these people, and wished that the current farming landscape were an easier place for them to succeed. Larger food producers with different priorities are often just doing what they must to survive. But Hamilton's subjects show that there is another way. Maybe it is time to start considering our options.
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