AGRARIANISM IS THE belief that true freedom belongs to the independent farmer who owns his or her own land. Only the yeoman farmer who can provide his own food from his own land remains truly independent and virtuous. Only the yeoman farmer truly has a stake in the land to defend it against attack in times of danger. Honest and incorruptible, independent farmers enjoy true freedom according to the agrarian view.

Agrarianism also harkens back to a more stable, settled social order of reciprocal social bonds that existed before the rise of cities and machines. Sir Roger de Coverley, a character from The Spectator by Joseph Addison and Richard Steele, exemplifies the best kind of paternalistic and rural values envisioned by many agrarians. James Everett Kibler's ...

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