I like Derrick Jensen a lot. Or perhaps I should say, I like his writing a lot, having never met the man. I like the way he seems to think. But I have to ask, all due respect, isn’t it a little odd for the man who wrote these fat, lovely booksThe Culture of Make Believe, A Language Older Than Words, Strangely Like War, Walking on Water, and Listening to the Land – to tell The Ecologist magazine, when they asked what single book he would give a child: “I wouldn’t give them a book. Books are part of the problem*: this strange belief that a tree has nothing to say until it is murdered, its flesh pulped, and then people stain this flesh with words.” Huh? To his credit, he went on to say “I would take children outside, and put them face to face with chipmunks, dragonflies, tadpoles, hummingbirds, stones, rivers, trees, crawdads. That said, if you’re going to force me to give them a book, it would be The Wind in the Willows, which would, I hope, remind them to go outside.” (You can’t access the interview online. You’ll either have to shell out for the newstand copy made of murdered trees, or take my word for it.) *emphasis mine


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