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The Shaker Image   book icon  
by Elmer Pearson (1974)

read: 11 December 2009
rating: [+]
categories: best in show, non-fiction

There’s something about the Shakers that inspires almost an insta-nostalgia for me, some sort of road not taken. I grew up near Harvard MA, the site of one of the Shaker communities and remember learning about them when I was little. I’m not much into organized religion but I love their furniture and believe, sort of like they did, that there is attainable perfection in design. This book is full of photos of Shaker communities with stories about the people in them. The Shakers used to pretty much keeps themselves entirely separate from “the World” and at some point they decided to shift this approach somewhat. These photos are in some sense promotional materials and in some other sense sort of a glimpse into a world most of us know very little about. The research that has gone into this volume, from Pearson and his two co-authors, is impressive.

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