Mother Nature’s Daughters

21st Century Women Farmers

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About the Book

Nearly half of all farmland in the U.S. is owned by women—295,000 of them. In an enterprise traditionally dominated by men, they are taking a lead role in overhauling a complex, often dysfunctional food system. This book features eight stories of women farmers who persevere despite treacherous weather and erratic commodities markets. Smart, independent, hard-working and politically astute, they explain in their own words how and why they chose, and continue to choose, farming.

About the Author(s)

Paula vW. Dáil is an emerita research professor in social welfare and public policy. Widely published in the social sciences, she is a political activist, former journalist, and award-winning non-fiction writer. She lives in the Lower Wisconsin River Valley of Southwestern Wisconsin.

Bibliographic Details

Paula vW. Dáil
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 252
Bibliographic Info: 18 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2017
pISBN: 978-0-7864-9782-9
eISBN: 978-1-4766-2722-9
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii
Preface 1
Introduction: The Dirtier My Clothes—The Better My Day: A Brief History of Woman Farmers 9
One. Godspeed the Plow: Spirit Connects with Land, Food and Mother Nature 43
Two. Farming for the Love of God 68
Three. Farming to Heal a Troubled Soul 105
Four. Don’t Let Your Daughters Grow Up to Be Farmers: Making a Living Off the Land 134
Five. Voting with a Fork: Farming as a Political Statement 163
Six. Farming for the Love of Farming 194
Conclusion: Cultivating the Dirty Life: Feminism at Its Finest 213
Chapter Notes 229
Bibliography 233
Index 235

Book Reviews & Awards

Winner, Norbert Blei/August Derleth Nonfiction Book Award—Council for Wisconsin Writers