Monday, June 11, 2012

A Family Farm: Life on an Illinois Dairy Farm

The applause really resounded for local author Robert Switzer at his reading / book-signing last week at the library.  Switzer's recently released book, A Family Farm: Life on an Illinois Dairy Farm is a rich and moving account of four generations who lived, worked, loved and struggled on the family's dairy farm.  Switzer spent most of his adult life as a successful scientist and academic, and so it is a real revelation to see such moving storytelling and such vivid imagery in his book. Through the lens of his family's experiences we see the tremendous shifts in our country's values and way of life; there have been profound changes in agriculture, technology, the role of women, the expectations of childhood,  and more. For a vivid introduction to his story (and to see some amazing paintings of the farm by Switzer's talented wife, artist Bonnie Switzer), check out this amazing slideshow, produced by the University of Illinois News Bureau.  You can also listen to the archived interview that Switzer recently did on our public radio station, WILL. Then, by all means, buy a copy or check the book out at the Urbana Free Library!

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