Transition Culture

An Evolving Exploration into the Head, Heart and Hands of Energy Descent

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1 Sep 2009

My Collection of Transition ‘Toilet Books’

toilet booksGood to see you again. Had a good break ‘staycationing’ (as it seems to be known, and as about 10% more Brits did this year than last year apparently), in Cornwall, Devon, the Forest of Dean, as well as taking my house to bits and painting it all (not yet finished). Anyway, Transition Culture is back. I thought I’d ease us back in gently, with a list of books with a difference. As regular readers will know, I often write lists of books I am reading (another is pending), but the pile of books that accumulates in my bathroom offers an insight into things I dip into, rather than read from cover to cover, in rare moments of peace and quiet (I believe they are sometimes referred to as ‘toilet books’).  They tend to accumulate, and every now and then get cleared out.  So I scooped up the current pile, and here they are, for what its worth.

Clinton Heylin (2005)  All Yesterdays’ Parties.  The Velvet Underground in Print. 1966-1971. Da Capo.

Fascinating collection of articles from the press of the time chronicalling the rise of the Velvet Underground.  Includes interviews, posters and reviews.  Also includes a famous article by rock journalist Lester Bangs, which includes the quote “modern music begins with the Velvets, and the implications and influence of what they did seems to go on forever”.  Picked it up in a remaindered books shop.

Nicky Scott (2005)  Composting: an easy household guide. Green Books.

Always good to return to for tips and advice.

Agroforestry Research Trust (2009) Fruit trees, nut trees, plants, seeds, books and sundries. August 2009 – July 2010.

Just arrived, even more mouthwatering than last year.  Essential stuff.

Simon Fairlie (1996) Low Impact Development: planning and people in a sustainable countryside. Jon Carpenter

Not quite sure how this ended up there, I think I was looking something specific up in it… a classic, just been reissued I think.

Aesop (1998)  The Complete Fables. Penguin.

My son went to a festival and came home with a copy of this.  An interesting new Penguin edition with a blank cover, so you can draw your own.  An interesting thing to dip into in terms of looking at the potential for new stories in the Transition context, but many of Aesop’s stories didn’t age especially well.

Newman, P, Beatley, T & Boyer, H. (2009)  Resilient Cities: responding to peak oil and climate change. Island Press.

Great book, will probably also appear in the forthcoming ‘proper’ list of books, very good look at peak oil responses on a city scale.

Mellanby, K. (1975) Can Britain Feed Itself? Merlin Press

Just useful to dip back into occasionally in trying to get where he was coming from.

Winifred Pennington. (1969) The History of British Vegetation. The English Universities Press Limited.

Always good to keep looking at this subject, and until I get a copy of Patrick Whitefield’s new book, The Living Landscape, this old school text book I picked up at a car boot sale is very useful.

Categories: General

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1 Sep 10:36am

I was just told yesterday that the technical term for a collection of “toilet books” is the “Loo-brary”!

Jennifer Lauruol
1 Sep 12:46pm