Blogs >> Two Meetings To Rescue The World by Colin Tudge

Two Meetings To Rescue The World by Colin Tudge

By Colin Tudge
College for Real Farming and Food Culture

Colin Tudge, Ruth West and guests will be co-teaching a 5 day course at Schumacher College in October 2017 (16th to 20th) entitled “FOOD, FARMING, AND A 21ST CENTURY RENAISSANCE”.

This autumn the College for Real Farming and Food Culture is running two complementary “extended seminars” on how to save the world – starting with food and farming and then reaching outwards.

The two meetings attack the issues from different angles and with different speakers -- but both argue that for starters we (humanity, the world) need to re-think food and farming from principles. We need nothing less than an Agrarian Renaissance – to be driven by all of us: a giant exercize in democracy.

But both show too that that we cannot change farming and cooking in isolation. We need an economy designed to support the kind of agriculture we really need, and governments that will supply such an economy, and science that is truly intended to serve humanity and the biosphere and not simply to maximize short-term wealth.

More than all of this, we need to spell out why we want to make such radical changes – which is a matter of moral principle and -- the thing that has gone horribly missing! -- of metaphysics. Metaphysics asks “the ultimate questions” which – because the subject has gone missing – nowadays don’t get asked.

All this amounts to a total re-think: nothing less than a cross-the-board “21st Century Renaissance, even more far-reaching than the “Italian” Renaissance of the 15th century onwards that brought the European Middle Ages to a close.

The first of the two meetings, from September 17th - 24th THE PERENNIAL WISDOM IN EVERYDAY LIFE, is a joint venture between the College for Real Farming and Chisholme Institute, beautifully sited on the Scottish borders. For the second, FOOD, FARMING AND A 21ST CENTURY RENAISSANCE, on October 16th – 19th, the College is collaborating with Schumacher College, Dartington, beautifully sited in rural Devon.

Although the two seminars cover similar ground the different venues and the different partnerships will ensure that each of them will have its own special character.


Colin is a biologist by education and a writer. He was born in London in 1943; educated at Dulwich College, 1954-61; and read zoology at Peterhouse, Cambridge, 1962-65. Colin has written a great many articles for a great many publications and for a time was on the staff of Farmers’ Weekly, then New Scientist, then BBC Radio 3. But mainly he writes books – on natural history, evolution, food and farming, and, lately, on the philosophy of science and metaphysics. He also enjoys public speaking. In the early 2000s Colin coined the expression "Enlightened Agriculture"; in 2008 Colin and his second wife Ruth established the Campaign for Real Farming and in 2010, together with Graham Harvey, they launched the Oxford Real Farming Conference as the antidote to the established Oxford Farming Conference. He is joined by Ruth West teaching the short course https://www.schumachercollege.org.uk/courses/short-courses/rethinking-food-and-farming