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A movement with its antecedents in the 1960s and 1970s-era hippie commune movement, much of which was inspired by the writings of 19th Century naturalist Henry David Thoreau, the “back to the land” movement is a rejection of the materialistic lifestyle that has moved much of humanity away from its natural relationship to the earth, with the consequent environmental devastation that has entailed, Followers of this movement seek to live a life in strict accordance with the philosophy of maintaining a symbiotic relationship with nature. In short, it seeks to live as simply, and with as little recourse to modern technologies, especially those that pollute the surroundings, as possible. The “back to the land” movement prides itself on growing its food, using strictly organic methods, and, in modern, popular terminology, leaving as light a “carbon footprint” as possible. Followers tend to live in geographically isolated communes or communities to remain close to nature and to minimize spiritual and physiological contamination from the modern, consumer-oriented society. Self-sufficiency, of course, is one of the movement’s bedrock principles (hence, the reliance on self-generated produce and producing one’s own clothing, to the extent possible, from “natural” fibers like cotton and hemp, the former being a very water-intensive crop, which is antithetical to the principles of the movement, but hemp production has been minimal for the past century.
The back to land movement was a social movement that occurred in the 1960s and 1970s which encouraged people to live life in sync with nature. People began migrating from cities to rural areas and started to practice living a more simple life. This movement influenced how people built their homes, used electricity, grew food, and whether they worked at home or outside of their home.
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