What We’re Reading (And Listening To)

- Posted by Quaker Earthcare Witness in 2023ActivismBeFriending CreationBooks We LoveNumber 1Volume 36,  | 2 min read
Covers of four books

We asked our QEW network about their favorite books, podcasts, and media from 2022. Here’s what they said.

Multiple Friends recommended The Nutmeg’s Curse by Amitav Ghosh about abusing nature’s bounty and colonization, and also Wilding: Returning Nature to Our Farm by Isabella Tree.

Pamela shared, “I loved Healing Grounds: Climate, Justice, and the Deep Roots of Regenerative Farming, by Liz Carlisle. The deep roots she talks about are in the indigenous, Black, and immigrant communities in our country.”

Climate Change Is Racist: Race, Privilege and the Struggle for Climate Justice by Jeremy Williams was also on the list as “an easy-to-read primer on how systemic racism and climate change overlap. If you still don’t get the connections, read this.”

Laurel, a professor at Drew Theological School wrote, “Of the things I taught, Robin Wall Kimmerer’s writing is always a favorite and I would recommend The Spirit of Soul Food: Race, Faith and Social Justice by Christoper Carter. My students, all of whom are in religious ministry/leadership, also really appreciated Jim Antal’s book Climate Church, Climate World.”

Carol writes, “My favorite this year is For the Love of Soil by Nicole Masters and What Your Food Ate by David Montgomery and Anne Bikle.”

RE recommended Cosmogenesis: An Unveiling of the Expanding Universe by Brian Swimme. Swimme says, “We humans are not only economic, religious or political beings; at the most fundamental level, we are cosmological beings.” RE writes, “Brian Thomas Swimme, mathematical cosmologist, brings us a New and Ancient Story of Home, of a living Universe and Cosmos….a page turner, potential life changer, and must read.”

Church of the Wild: How Nature Invites Us into the Sacred by Victoria Loorz was also recommended. The description reads, “With an ecospiritual lens on biblical narratives and a fresh look at a community larger than our own species, Church of the Wild uncovers the wild roots of faith and helps us deepen our commitment to a suffering earth by falling in love with it—and calling it church.”

Mary writes, “I am still under the spell of The Treeline [by Ben Rawlence], which is a powerful statement about this planet as an organic whole entity, whose complex systems are not separate, but are really one even more complex system in which we participate. The author traveled our northern treeline through Europe, Siberia, Alaska, Canada, and Greenland. I strongly recommend that you get hold of this book and read it. I predict it will wake you up.”

Friends shared a few podcast recommendations: Refugia and the Emergence Magazine’s Podcast, especially Robin Wall Kimmerer’s “The Serviceberry, An Economy of Abundance” episode as a “special favorite.”

Other books mentioned included:

  • The Origin of Capitalism: A Longer View Paperback by Ellen Meiksins Wood,
  • Sacred Nature: Restoring our Ancient Bond with the Natural World by Karen Armstrong,
  • Climate Chaos: Lessons on Survival from Our Ancestors by Brian Fagan,
  • Nature’s Best Hope by Douglas Tallamy,
  • Losing Eden by Lucy Jones,
  • Water Always Wins: Thriving in an Age of Drought and Deluge by Erica Gies, and
  • Mini-Forest Revolution: Using the Miawaki Method to Rapidly Rewild the World by Hannah Lewis, with an introduction by Paul Hawken.

What’s on your list?