MOTHER's Newsworthies: Edward Abbey, Garrison Keillor and Barbara Bel Geddes

Learn how author Edward Abbey, radio talk-host Garrison Keillor and actress Barbara Bel Geddes practice simplicity in their day-to-day lives.

| September/October 1982

  • 77-32-i1
     For two hours every Saturday evening, Garrison Keillor entertains Americans with A Prairie Home Companion radio talk show filled with stories and folk music.

  • 77-32-i1

Brief: Edward Abbey

In 15 published books, Edward Abbey has shown himself to be a novelist, essayist, eco-raider, desert rat, fire lookout, exalter of the wilderness, and eloquent self-proclaimed defender of the American West. Saving the world, however, is just one of his hobbies.

Abbey's new book, Down the River, is an exhilarating collection of essays — mostly about the agonies and raptures of river rafting — wrapped around a few good stories and some zesty polemics.

A true autochthonic — that is, sprung from the earth — patriot (as he describes one of his own characters), Abbey swears allegiance only to the land he knows ... the spare, rough, wild, undeveloped, and unbroken slick-rock/canyon/desert he's lived in most of his adult life. "I was an environmentalist, an ecologist, before I ever heard the terms," he says.

The writer favors low productivity and a contracting economy. "Growth for the sake of growth [is the] ideology of the cancer cell," Edward says. He also favors tax, policies that encourage negative population growth: "A population of 100 million might make the U.S. livable again."

Perhaps most of all, Abbey is opposed to what developers and their political friends call the "humanization" of the West. It's natural, he emphasizes, for the desert to be "not inhuman but nonhuman".

Edward Abbey's best-selling work, The Monkey Wrench Gang, is about four likable heroes — not protagonists ... heroes — who make "eco-raids" upon industrial tourism and commercial development. This book, which many consider to be Abbey's finest novel, is obviously based on his own hands-on experience. In fact, the author considers himself an agrarian anarchist, an agitator, an extremist. "Human society," he has said, "is like a stew ... if you don't keep it stirred up, you get a lot of scum on top." — Morton Kamins.  

Mother Earth News Fair Schedule 2019


Next: April, 27-28 2019
Asheville, NC

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!


Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

Money-Saving Tips in Every Issue!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters