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Remembering: A Novel (Port William) de…
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Remembering: A Novel (Port William) (original: 1990; edição: 2008)

de Wendell Berry (Autor)

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258779,599 (4.28)12
Published in 1990 by the legendary North Point Press, this is a poetic novel of despair, hope, and the redemptive power of work. After losing his hand in an accident, Andy Catlett confronts an agronomist whose surreal vision can see only industrial farming. This vision is powerfully contrasted with that of modest Amish farmers content to live outside the pressures brought by capitalist postindustrialprogress, and by working the land to keep "away the three great evils, boredom, vice, and need." As Andy's perspective filters through his anger over his loss and the harsh city of San Francisco surrounding him, he begins to remember: the people and places that wait 2,000 miles away in his Kentucky home, the comfort he knew as a farmer, and his symbiotic relationship to the soil. Andy laments the modern shift away from the love of the land, even as he begins to accept his own changed relationship to the world. Wendell Berry's continued fascination with the power of memory continues in this treasured novel set in 1976.… (mais)
Membro:Pastorjmill
Título:Remembering: A Novel (Port William)
Autores:Wendell Berry (Autor)
Informação:Counterpoint (2008), 112 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca
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Remembering de Wendell Berry (1990)

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Summary: Following the loss of a hand, a grieving Andy Catlett struggles with both his loss and his anger with agribusiness, that he believes is destroying a way of life, and gropes his way toward healing.

Andy Catlett is suffering from two losses, and struggles with anger from both. While harvesting crops with a neighbor, his right hand is mangled in a machine, resulting in the loss of the hand. One of the remarkable qualities of this narrative is how Berry explores the inner struggle of a capable man who struggles to write, to dress himself, and not make a nuisance of himself while doing farm chores. He is angry with himself, and quarreling incessantly with his wife, who sees through it all and Andy's inability to forgive himself.

He has been angry with American agribusiness for a long period of time, how it has destroyed a way of life in the name of efficiency which underwrites equipment manufacturers, fuel and fertilizer interests, and banks at the expense of the few remaining farmers in perpetual debt. He saw its effects as a journalist, and sees them in the erosion of a way of life in the town to which he returned to farm, Port William. He is not an easy person to live with.

Catlett's twin angers reach a crisis point when he leaves home, amid alienating arguments with his wife that seem to have no resolution, to speak at an agricultural conference. He sets aside his planned speech to excoriate the assembled experts, whose mathematical models do not touch the pain experienced by all those who have left farms. He tells the stories of his ancestors and friends from Port William, and how they have suffered under the ideas of the experts and ends with damning the enterprise.

The book is framed by two dreams, one in his hotel in San Francisco after speaking, the other in the woods near his Kentucky home, a beatific vision of a transformed Port William. In between, Catlett travels a journey of remembering, as he walks the streets of San Francisco to the bay, and then on his flight home. He recalls the speech, his arguments with Flora, his wife, the accident, his sense of being unmanned, cut off from his hand, as it were.

Perhaps the most effective portion was remembering his time as a journalist, and two interviews, one planned and one not. He visits the Meikelberger farm, the symbol of modern agriculture, with its huge grain bins, monstrous equipment, and 2,000 acres planted in nothing but corn as far as the eye can see. It is an impressive operation but beneath the impressive appearance is a man with an ulcer, incessant worry over perpetual debt, all built atop old farmsteads that have disappeared. He detours, enroute to Pittsburgh, through Amish country in eastern Ohio, stops to watch a farmer plowing his field with a team of three beautiful horses. He sees a well-kept farmstead, and nearby farms. He is offered a chance to plow with the team, bringing back childhood memories. As he questions Yoder, he learns the farm has no debt, and Yoder, who is older than Meikelberger looks ten years younger. If he needs help, there are nearby neighbors to pitch in.

It's what led Catlett back to farming, restoring an old abandoned property he and friends had long talked about. Flora and Andy make a go of it, becoming part of the membership of Port William. And then the accident....The question remains of whether Andy will find healing and a new kind of wholeness as he journeys home.

In this work, Berry weaves his own convictions about the destruction of an agricultural way of life, of communities, and the land with an perceptive exploration of what the loss of a hand can mean, and whether Andy will suffer destruction of his self, his marriage, and his way of life. There are achingly beautiful passages and deeply troubling ones as we plumb the depths of Andy's turmoil. Berry invites us to consider both the healing of deeply wounded people, as well as deeply wounded lands and communities. ( )
  BobonBooks | Dec 16, 2019 |
Powerful !!!!!! A day in the life of Andy Catlett.A soulful story of remembering who you are and where you came from.Redemption,integrity and dignity.A reminder we need to be true to our history and ourselves. Author, Wendell Berry is an American classic. ( )
  LauGal | Aug 16, 2016 |
..."that an argument was losing did not mean that it should not be made."

Wendell Berry's novels haunt me. Although somewhat choppy, his style has a simple eloquence. I do not necessarily agree with all of his premises or conclusions, but he does make me think. Berry's arguments do seem to be losing in our day and age, but I for one am glad that he is making them.

Most of all, I am intrigued by his emphasis on place, because I was born and raised among those who valued place in a similar way. There are times when I think he puts too much stock in the concept of place as it relates to this world, since I am fully persuaded that home and place can never be fully realized in this world - the very longing for it points us to another world.

But in this novel he does reveal a bit more of his "theology" of place, particularly at the end, which is reminiscent of Lewis' real Narnia within Narnia, and which even more importantly ties into the types and shadows with which this world overflows. The longing and reverence for home - for a place in this world - is strong; properly viewed and prioritized, it is an important tie which binds us to our covenant community as Christians (which has similarities what Berry calls "the membership" of the farming community in Port William).

I am grateful for the boundary lines fallen in pleasant places which the Lord has graciously given in my life, with their attendant love and commitment to home, family, and community. My community now is miles removed from the community where I grew up, but it is not altogether different, and for that I am also grateful. The world Berry portrays is one which I have glimpsed in the lives of grandparents, parents, uncles, aunts, and cousins...and I realize that my children have little context for that world. I think I will ask them to read some of Berry's Port William canon to give a better idea of what has gone into the making of me, and consequently, the making of them. ( )
  greengables | Jun 8, 2012 |
Great Read. Poetic and moving. At points the writing seemed to be a bit choppy, but enjoyable none-the-less. ( )
  joelhagan | Jan 29, 2011 |
This book is lyrical and haunting. It's a bit difficult to read at first, but well worth the effort. It resonates with hope and with the awareness of an eternity that exists alongside our time-bound life. ( )
  lothiriel2003 | Sep 3, 2010 |
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Published in 1990 by the legendary North Point Press, this is a poetic novel of despair, hope, and the redemptive power of work. After losing his hand in an accident, Andy Catlett confronts an agronomist whose surreal vision can see only industrial farming. This vision is powerfully contrasted with that of modest Amish farmers content to live outside the pressures brought by capitalist postindustrialprogress, and by working the land to keep "away the three great evils, boredom, vice, and need." As Andy's perspective filters through his anger over his loss and the harsh city of San Francisco surrounding him, he begins to remember: the people and places that wait 2,000 miles away in his Kentucky home, the comfort he knew as a farmer, and his symbiotic relationship to the soil. Andy laments the modern shift away from the love of the land, even as he begins to accept his own changed relationship to the world. Wendell Berry's continued fascination with the power of memory continues in this treasured novel set in 1976.

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