In [Wendell Berry’s] new book, he has a characteristically bittersweet message: “Because the age of global search and discovery now is ending—because by now we have so thoroughly ransacked, appropriated, and diminished the globe’s original wealth—we can see how generous and abounding is the commonwealth of life.” But he has never suggested that everyone flee the city and the suburbs and take up farming. “I am suggesting,” he once wrote, “that most people now are living on the far side of a broken connection, and that this is potentially catastrophic.”

Dorothy Wickenden, “Wendell Berry’s Advice for a Cataclysmic Age”

[Latina muralist Juana Alicia] reminded me what my Black neighbors had taught me earlier that decade, that the yearning to be more rugged, more rustic, more rough, more scruffy, is often a white and a white-collar yearning, and a those who have only recently escaped agricultural work, maybe sharecropping or slavery or migrant labor, who have survived being treated as dirty or backward, are often glad to be polished and elegant. You have to feel securely high to want to go low, urban to yearn for the rural, smooth to desire roughness, anxious about artificiality to seek this version of authenticity. And if you see the countryside as a place of rest and respite you’re probably not a farmworker.

Rebecca Solnit, Orwell’s Roses