William Morris and Jane Austen: Lens for Literature

I’m reading about William Morris, the 19th century designer and socialist. His company rejected the assembly line in favor of treating every creation like a work of art to be done by one person from start to finish. Morris learned old techniques and reinvented lost techniques. He hoped that as people saw the great quality products they would shun the cheaper mass-produced goods, but of course this didn’t happen and instead other companies produced cheap knock-offs of his work. I first heard of him years ago at university, when I was busy fingerweaving Metis-style sashes, which gave me at least Continue reading

ya, the revolution really isn’t here. Could we keep working on other things?

It is weird how life can change as certain people enter or exit one’s life, even tangentially, because of the ideas those people bring. I can look back over the last half a year and see how certain people’s ideas about revolution instead of reform have entered my social circle. I can see their effect not just on myself, but on some of my friends. It’s interesting to look at. Some of the people attempting to boycott the Ontario election have expressed a belief that revolution is going to come soon. I remember hearing the same belief during the Occupy Continue reading

Legislate, or Build a Movement?

My city has now banned commercial fertilizers containing phosphorus. This is because my city is actually a collection of smaller communities as well as the city, and the whole incorporates a huge number of lakes and streams, many of which are suffering from blue-green algae blooms. They’ve been asking for a couple of years now for people to not use phosphorus fertilizers on their yards but people still do it. I’m glad the ban was passed. It is a small step, and will not solve the problem of blue-green algae but will hopefully help.In trying to raise awareness of the issue Continue reading