Saturday, March 14, 2009

better off

To kill the time on the bus this week, I read a great book titled: Better Off by Eric Brende.

Eric graduated from M.I.T. with a hunch that man had become a slave to technology and that, like the title implies, we might be better off without most of it. To research the point, he and his wife packed up their things and decided to live with a community in the midwest, that he had heard of by chance, that shunned electricity and motors of any type. They lived there for over 18 months, and the book documents their experiences there, as well as how he applied them to their lives after they left. It was a great read, and very inspirational.

I still have a fresh high from reading the book. We'll see how I feel about most of it once I've had a chance to digest it all a bit more, but I suspect my feelings wont change much, since I went into the book wanting justification for some of the similar feelings I've been having recently.

I've read books that I've taken similar messages from in the past, but they were mostly anthropological studies of so-called "primitive" societies; The Forest People by Colin Turnbull immediately comes to mind. But it was interesting to read a book that set out to prove the same point without worrying about seperating the authors ethnocentric views from the narrative.