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LifePlace: Bioregional Thought and Practice Paperback – April 22, 2003

ISBN-13: 978-0520236288 ISBN-10: 0520236289 Edition: 1st
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LifePlace: Bioregional Thought and Practice + The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays of Wendell Berry
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Editorial Reviews


"The author asks three existential questions: Who am I? Where am I? What am I supposed to do? LIFEPLACE is a guide to answering the second question, which, in the end, may help us to better address the remaining two."--Scott Davis, "Landscape Architecture"

From the Inside Flap

"A superb blend of thoughtful analysis and delightfully readable prose, LifePlace is both a major contribution to bioregional literature and an excellent guide to sustainable practice."—Daniel Kemmis, author of This Sovereign Land: A New Vision for Governing the West

"LifePlace offers an inspired approach for creating an alternative, more secure future than presently faces us. Thayer's arguments are convincing; his optimism and sense of wonder are contagious. As we finish the book, we are changed by it, and its influence lingers like a time-release capsule. LifePlace is a profound contribution to landscape architecture literature and beyond."—Joan Woodward, author of Waterstained Landscapes: Seeing and Shaping Regionally Distinctive Places

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Product Details

  • Series: BFI Modern Classics
  • Paperback: 317 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press; 1st edition (April 22, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520236289
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520236288
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #939,468 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Avery Yale Kamila, on July 17, 2003
Format: Paperback
In a narrative rich with the essence of the Sacramento Valley, Thayer crafts a compelling argument for a life lived closer to the earth. He begins this evocative book--which is part memoir, part lifestyle manual--by describing his home of the last 30 years as "a mail-order spouse whom I would grow to appreciate, then love." Most readers will forgive his reluctant love affair, for Thayer moved to California's monotonous, agricultural valley from the rugged, mountainscape of Boulder, Colorado.
The author, a landscape architecture professor at the University of California, Davis, chronicles his growing connection with and attachment to a place some might find unlovable as an illustration of his point that every area possesses both unique potentials and limitations. He advocates for communities built upon new urbanist principles, art that is framed by region and education that is reflective of place. Drawing from personal experience, he offers a multitude of suggestions on how to reconnect with our immediate surroundings.
He cautions against allowing our local communities to be supplanted by the hegemony of the global economy and champions relocalized trade. He takes exception to large, top-down organizations. "The truth," he writes, "which neither the traditional right nor left wishes to admit, is that broadly enfranchised, local grassroots efforts to identify with and care for natural regions are so powerful, so ultimately democratic, and so basically popular with the American people that they threaten the huge, entrenched political organizations on both sides."
At its core, the book holds that a bioregional orientation is the only way to create true sustainability. Building upon the themes of other authors, such as Paul Hawken, Jane Jacobs and David Orr, Thayer shows readers how a deepened connection to the surrounding natural region can add meaning and texture to our often disconnected, modern lives.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amanda on May 22, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had to get this for a school book, but I loved it. Thayer's ideas on bioregional practices is very insightful. He writes in a way that you always learn something, but it's easy to read.
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