Wendell E. Berry, noted poet, essayist, novelist, farmer and conservationist, delivered the 41st Jefferson Lecture in the Humanities, entitled It All Turns on Affection, from the Concert Hall of The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts April 23, 2012. The annual lecture, sponsored by National Endowment for the Humanities, is the most prestigious honor the federal government bestows for distinguished intellectual achievement in the humanities.

“Wendell Berry is an American treasure whose prose and poetry have — with subtlety, intelligence, and conviction — helped open our eyes to the importance of respecting and living with nature,” said NEH Chairman Jim Leach. “Tilling the land of his Kentucky forebears, he is a 21st-century Henry David Thoreau.”

In his writing and activism, Berry has spent his career meditating on our relationship and responsibilities to the land and community. He is the author of more than forty books of poems, essays, short stories, and novels, many of which draw on the traditional rural values of Berry’s native Kentucky.

To access an online copy of Berry’s lecture and other related documents, go here. To watch a video recording of the lecture, go here.

Posted on May 03 2012