Podcast from the Prairie: Mad About Science

November 10, 2020

In the first two episodes of “Podcast from the Prairie,” Wes Jackson discussed some of the key ideas he developed in his half-century career as an educator and activist in the movement for ecological sustainability, and reflected on how his rural upbringing influenced his career. In Episode 3, titled “Mad about Science,” host Robert Jensen asks Wes how formal science differs from, and is similar to, the folk science he learned on the farm growing up. Wes earned degrees in biology, botany, and genetics and was a professor of environmental studies before leaving university life to co-found The Land Institute in 1976. Recognizing that modern science has changed society for the better and the worse, Wes ponders how modern science is both necessary for, and can pose threats to, our struggle to create a sustainable human presence on the planet.

“Podcast from the Prairie” is available on SoundCloud, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, Castbox, Blubrry, and Overcast. https://soundcloud.com/michael-johnson-910748507

For more information, go to https://podcastfromtheprairie.com/ and https://landinstitute.org/learn/podcast-from-the-prairie/.


“Podcast from the Prairie” is previewing some of the stories from Wes Jackson’s forthcoming book, Hogs Are Up: Stories of the Land, with Digressionswhich will be published in early 2021 by the University Press of Kansas.

Robert Jensen’s book, The Restless and Relentless Mind of Wes Jackson: Searching for Sustainability, summarizes Wes’ key ideas over the past half-century and will be out at the same time, also from UPK.


Wes Jackson

Wes Jackson is one of the foremost figures in the international sustainable agriculture movement. Co-founder and president emeritus of The Land Institute in Salina, Kansas, he has pioneered research in Natural Systems Agriculture — including perennial grains, perennial polycultures, and intercropping — for over 40 years. He was a professor of biology at Kansas Wesleyan and later established the Environmental Studies program at California State University, Sacramento, where he became a tenured full professor. He is the author of several books including Consulting the Genius of the Place: An Ecological Approach to a New Agriculture (2011), Becoming Native to This Place (1994), Altars of Unhewn Stone (1987), and New Roots for Agriculture (1980). Wes is a Fellow of the Post Carbon Institute.

Tags: science, sustainability education