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Ecovillage Living: Restoring the Earth and Her People Paperback – Aug 2002

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Product details

  • Paperback: 180 pages
  • Publisher: Green Books (Aug. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1903998166
  • ISBN-13: 978-1903998168
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 1.3 x 29.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 699,745 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


Finally, a practical blueprint for sustainable lifestyles that will enable humanity to survive in balance with nature. Hanne Marstrand Strong, Earth Restoration Corps and The Manitou Foundation, Colorado, USA This is a most important book, containing a wealth of guidance on how to move from the terminal phase of the industrial growth society into a future with a future. John Seed, The Deep Ecology Movement

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By J. Mcshane on 15 Aug. 2014
Nice book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 8 reviews
61 of 63 people found the following review helpful
Nature Has No Reset Buttons 9 Dec. 2002
By J.W.K - Published on
Finally, it has arrived. I've been waiting for this book for a long time. As an environmental philosopher, I have come to believe that ecovillages (or urban villages - the Global Ecovillage Network doesn't distinguish) are our only hope for survival on this planet. And this is the best book available on the subject.
A quick glance at modern society shows many signs of cultural and economic stress: including war, militarization, gun violence, media violence, over-consumption of resources, overpopulation, failing democracy, money in politics, monopolization, sexual inequality, racism, inadequate health care, rising crime rates, advertisement glut, commercialized education, materialism, community fragmentation, work-related stress, mass layoffs, poverty, and a mass sense of alienation - from self, other and nature.
Signs of biological stress in the natural world are even more daunting. Fisheries are collapsing, forests are shrinking, rangelands are deteriorating, soils are eroding, species are disappearing, global temperatures are rising, rivers are draining dry, water tables are falling, the ozone layer is depleting, more destructive storms are brewing, the polar ice caps are melting and sea level is rising (see ECO-ECONOMY for details on the eco-crisis). It is in this context that Chris Bright's warning rings ominous: "Nature has no reset buttons."
Trapped in the confines of global economic corporatism, we must ask, Could it be that the fundamental design of society is flawed? Are large nation-states and even larger corporations conducive to ecological and cultural health? How about wage labor and the monetary system in general? How do we go about creating unique and beautiful communities without inequality, hunger, insecurity, want - and without killing the planet? In a word, how can we live the Good Life? Is it possible?
The answer to all of these problems is the same, and you will find them in this book. Ecovillages are the answer! In this book you can expect to find a great collection of photographs, wonderful charts and graphs, maps, people profiles, design layouts, philosophical perspectives and the historical background of the ecovillage movement. There is no better book on the subject, and no more important subject for the new millennium. How else will homo sapiens reach homeostasis on this planet? If you can think of a way, please send me an email.
51 of 53 people found the following review helpful
The Coming of Age of a Movement 24 Oct. 2002
By Russ Purvis - Published on
This book has the same potential for impacting global society as Bill Mollison's seminal work, "Permaculture: A Designers' Manual"! In fact, "Ecovillage Living" adds the human dimension to permaculture. As permaculture was a new word and espoused an alternative harmonious world view, based on a natural order and relatedness, "Ecovillage" has now been retrieved from the banality of contemporary "Green" suburban marketing slogans. An acceptable standard for "Ecovillage" has now been defined in all of it's wonderful, practical, complexity. "Ecovillage Living" comes from the source, Hildur Jackson, one of the founders of the Ecovillage Movement.
Like a well cut diamond, "Ecovillage Living's" beauty is multi-faceted. It could be a textbook for the wealth of data, practical real life examples, and additional resources presented. The remarkable compilation of photographs and renderings,takes the reader to many of the 15,000 sites and into the hearts and minds of the movement. This visual variety and global context easily translates into a coffee table icon, that could stimulate dreams into action. In a more personal vein it could be seen as a personal diary/contemporary record of an increasing number of people on six continents that sense their need to reconnect with the planet and each other. It's a diary/record of their dreams manifested, and invites others to join them!
As former President of Silicon Valley Habitat for Humanity,Inc., a "Green" builder and developer, and an aspiring Ecovillage occupant, it's a pleasure to give "Ecovillage Living" my highest recommendation.
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
a wonderful book 27 Feb. 2003
By garten - Published on
I have never heard of ecovillages before and it seems to be the perfect idea. The book consists of articles about and by different people about different ecovillages around the globe. I am fascinated how many aspects there are to ecological cultural and social living. There is lot of pictures of "green" houses and maps of some villages, also there is emailadresses and a lot of recources. I just started reading but I know that this is definitly the most important book I found in a long, long time.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By Steven H Propp - Published on
Hildur Jackson (co-founder with her husband of the Gaia Trust in 1991) and Karen Svensson have edited (they also wrote several articles apiece) this beautifully-photographed and illustrated 2002 book that is practically a "Whole Earth Catalog" for Ecovillages. With sections such as "The Ecological Dimension," "The Social Dimension," "The Cultural-Spiritual Dimension," "The Process of Creating an Ecovillage," and several pages of "Resources" at the end of the book, the seventy-plus brief articles provide an excellent overview of Ecovillages.

Svensson writes, "Ecovillages are communities of people who strive to lead a sustainable lifestyle in harmony with each other, other living beings and the Earth. Their purpose is to combine a supportive social-cultural environment with a low-impact lifestyle." Permaculture ("Permanent Agriculture"), or "the harmonious integration of landscape and people, providing their food, energy, shelter, and other material and non-material needs in a sustainable way," is an important facet. "Ecovillages are not developer-led. They are made by people, for themselves. If you want to start an ecovillage, you have to get a startup group together. The process of creation is what makes the glue that will turn the ecovillage into a functioning community."

In an article on "Green Businesses at Ecovillages," Jackson writes, "Ecovillagers often accept a less material lifestyle as part of the process of community building. Even when their needs are diminished this way, they still have to find ways of keeping themselves afloat financially in the long run." An author notes that "The strength of the ecovillage movement is that social-economic sustainability is just as noticeable and important as the ecological aspect."

They also distinguish between ecovillages, and the "cohousing" alternative: "The difference between ecovillages and cohousings is a question of how far or deep the transformation of lifestyle is, and not a matter of suburb versus countryside.... Cohousings take one step in the right direction by creating a good social environment. If you want to make ecological and social practices and/or spirituality an important part of your life, an ecovillage is the way to go."

If you have any interest in ecovillages (and you must, if you're reading this book review), this book is MUST READING!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Verified Purchase
This book has everything - case studies, engineering information on power, water, waste systems,...Aside from a few grammatical/spelling errors, it was nicely put together. It was more of a textbook-style with great information and questions to consider, long lists of resources to further your research too. Some good and some blurry graphics. Sections are divided up so you get perspectives from ecological, social and cultural focuses. Pointed out several things in which we were able to avoid mistakes and overcomes challenges in developing our eco-village. The best help I've found out there thus far (after reading about 9 books on the topic).
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