It would be easy to take a cursory glance at Southern Agrarianism and think that it is about everyone being a farmer or some sort of Utopian vision, but that would be far from the truth. In fact, Southern Agrarianism is very much like the Victory Garden programs during both the First and the Second World Wars.
An agrarian society is hardly one that has no use at all for industries, for professional vocations, for scholars and artists, and for the life of cities. Technically, perhaps, an agrarian society is one in which agriculture is the leading vocation, whether for wealth, for pleasure, or for prestige – a form of labor that is pursued with intelligence and leisure, and that becomes the model to which the other forms approach as well as they may.
Introduction: A Statement of Principles in the book, I’ll Take My Stand
Victory Gardens were about making people aware of the fundamental importance of food. It was about promoting the idea that food is everyone’s job – not just commercial farmers. It was about encouraging people to achieve some level of self-reliance. Each of these fits within Southern Agrarianism.
Southern Agrarianism is, of course, far more than that since it is a cultural movement; however, let’s continue with the comparison to the Victory Garden program. In addition to the posters and programs that encouraged people to grow their own vegetables and raise their own chickens, the Victory Garden programs were also about educating people in how to do it. Victory Garden programs were not just here in America – it was also done in England, where the situation was far more critical. Part of the Axis strategy was to cut off shipping and starve England.
Just like the Victory Garden programs, one of the aims of The Southern Agrarian blog is to share information on the how-to aspects of growing your own food and increasing your level of self-sufficiency. Some of the upcoming posts include reviews of tools like the SoilSaver Composter, the Hoss Wheel Hoe (both the double wheel and the high arch models), the Blackhawk corn sheller, and many other things found in our tool shed.