Come on in and feed your mind
A CRUDE AWAKENING
a film by Basil Gelpke and Ray McCormack
It doesn't feature any zombies or serial killers, but this might be the scariest movie you'll see all year. Somber visits to onetime oil boomtowns, chilling interviews with former industry executives, and an eye-opening look at how this ever-scarcer resource is intertwined with our culture all add up to one conclusion: Oil, the "bloodstream of the world economy," may well bring an end to it. oilcrashmovie.com
a book by Alan Snitow and Deborah Kaufman with Michael Fox
The new water barons want free public access to clean water to be a thing of the past. But citizens around the world have mounted fierce resistance to attempts by multinational corporations like Nestle and Suez to privatize "blue gold." This literary follow-up to the authors' 2004 documentary of the same name is an urgent call to stop the sale of water sources to the highest bidder. --Silja J. A. Talvi
a film by Aaron Woolf
It sounds like the setup to a joke: Two college buddies move from Boston to Iowa to grow an acre of corn. But this lighthearted documentary is also enlightening, as the pair supplement their farming efforts by tracking corn through the food system--visiting cattle operations that use it as feed, interviewing urban doctors about obesity that may stem from corn-based sweeteners, even brewing up a batch of their own high-fructose corn syrup. kingcorn.net
a book by Paul Hawken
Smith & Hawken's founder didn't set out to pen a hopeful book. "Optimism," writes Paul Hawken, "discovered me." By his count, more than a million groups around the world are fighting for the environment, social justice, and indigenous rights--what he terms a decentralized "immune system" response to the planet's troubles. Visiting Hawken's new Web site, wiserearth.org, a collaborative tool for 100,000 such groups, might cheer you too. --Joan Hamilton
Let's Talk: Discuss this selection with your friends and neighbors.
A SLICE OF ORGANIC LIFE
a book edited by Sheherazade Goldsmith
Hard work never looked so enticing as in this lushly illustrated manual for cooking, gardening, and scrubbing your way to a better planet. Former British model Sheherazade Goldsmith's glamming up of rural living may not tempt everyone into raising chickens or pigs, but who wouldn't enjoy tips for giving eco-presents or a recipe for organic mulled wine?