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The Hidden Wound Paperback – May 18, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Counterpoint; Second Edition edition (May 18, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582434867
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582434865
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 6.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #290,589 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A profound, passionate, crucial piece of writing . . . Few readers, and I think, no writers will be able to read it without a small pulse of triumph at the temples: the strange, almost communal sense of triumph one feels when someone has written truly well . . . The statement it makes is intricate and beautiful, sad but strong." —Larry McMurtry, The Washington Post

"Berry has produced one of the most humane, honest, liberating works of our time. It is a beautiful book. More than that, it has become at one stroke an essential book. Every American who can read at all should read it." —Hayden Carruth, The Village Voice

"One of the most impressive aspects of Berry's book is the authentic simplicity of his style, the directness with which that style can accommodate Tolstoy, Malcolm X, work songs, anecdotes, speculation, and polemic indignation . . . The strength of this book is its connecting America's two major problems: the exploiting of men and land; it deserves as wide an audience as possible." —Louisville Courier-Journal

"One of the most touching and true personal testaments concerned with our country's racial dilemma." —Publishers Weekly

"The brunt of the book is to wake us up, page after page, from stupidity. 'It is a kind of death,' Montaigne said, 'to avoid the pain of well doing, or trouble of well living.' Wendell Berry makes that observation rip the air like an alarm clock." —Guy Davenport, Life

About the Author

Wendell Berry is the author of thirty-two books of essays, poetry and novels. A native Kentuckian, he lived and taught in New York and California before returning permanently to the Kentucky River region, where he farms on 125 acres in Henry County. He has received numerous awards for his work, including one from the National Institute and Academy of Arts and Letters in 1971, and, most recently, the T.S. Eliot Award.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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I highly recommend it as a continuation of the issues discussed in "The Hidden Wound".
Patricia Kramer
Wendell Berry is one of the most humane writers I have been fortunate to follow in print.
Rev. Stephen Goldstein
It is a strong message to white men, an important message and should be read by all men.
Joan Bailey

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 18, 1999
Format: Paperback
Wendell Berry, English professor at the University of Kentucky and farmer of his family's farm in Kentucky, comes to grips with the burden of being the descendent of slave owners. Like so many white Americans, he wants racism to end and does not want to pass either the guilt or the racism on to the next generations. Here he tries to address the many complex issues of racism in this country. People of all races will be engaged by his fine writing and sensitivity. You might want to look at some of his other books as well. Fidelity is a series of gracious short stories exploring the relationships between individuals and families in a small Kentucky town called Port William. He has picked up this theme in several other books as well. He is well known for his poetry which is published in collections and in another one of my favorites, Sabbath.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Kramer on April 8, 2008
Format: Paperback
Wow, Wendell Berry wrote this book when he was only 34. At the Wisconsin Book Festival, Rick Bass said it was his favorite Wendell Berry book. It is an amazing chronicle of a man looking honestly at his beliefs and his culture regarding racism and trying to wipe away the cob webs and face the real life effects on blacks and whites alike.

This book was published in 1970 and I don't think our culture has yet faced the "wound" as Berry tries to in this book as illustrated by the reaction to Barack Obama's "Racism" speech. By chance the next book I picked up to read is a compilation of essays about the state of America, "These United States: Original Essays by Leading American Writers on Their State Within the Union" edited by John Leonard. The first essay is by Diane McWhorter as she discusses these same issues in present day Alabama. It is subtitled "The Past is Still Not Past". I highly recommend it as a continuation of the issues discussed in "The Hidden Wound".
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By David on February 12, 2005
Format: Paperback
It's hard to believe Berry first published this essay in 1970. It is still a cutting edge exploration of the way in which racism is a disaster for white people. He writes beautifully and movingly about the self interest of white people to end racism and the deep life changes necessary to do it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Wendell Berry is a great writer, unique in many ways. He is a man of the land and writes about it in varying ways. This book is not so much about the land, but of the different people of the land, depending upon their skin color. It is a strong message to white men, an important message and should be read by all men. Doesn't hurt the women either.
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By Mike on November 22, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Wendell Berry's luminous account of and reflection on the racism that nearly broke his young heart settles on the reader with all the grace and beauty of poetry. Although first published over 40 years ago, The Hidden Wound will unsettle and disquiet any thoughtful American--even more so today. Not a salve, his essay is more a first step toward rehabilitation by one of our country's most powerful and thoughtful essayists.
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