Private: College for Real Farming and Food Culture

Daring to rethink nature

“To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness. What we choose to emphasise in this complex history will determine our lives.” Howard Zinn


Our food system is dominated by a neoliberal mindset that uncritically privileges the roles of industrialisation, the individual and the marketplace above all other considerations. But to accomplish such hegemony, neoliberalism actively discourages other world views and histories that are founded on the basic truth that we are all connected, both to the rest of society and the biosphere.

To overcome the dominance and narrowness of neoliberal orthodoxy we need to rethink our societal and individual goals from first principles. This rethinking process – best achieved through discourse and meaningful debate – is particularly vital for a reinvigorated and fair food system. We cannot push and pull our food chain in a viable direction by rethinking alone, but the very process of seeking options for a better food system requires an opening of our heads and hearts towards the myriad ways in which humanity has valued nutrition across our past, present and future.

“Not everything that is faced can be changed. But nothing can be changed until it is faced… History is not the past. It is the present. We carry our history with us. We are our history.” James Baldwin




Top: Thanks to Tom Murphy for this photo taken at Wakelyns Organic Agroforestry in Suffolk

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