Life with Principle: Thoreau’s Voice in Our Time

Produced by Melvyn Hopper

See, sponsored by the Thoreau Society The DVD costs $250 for educational use and includes:
The 56-minute film, Life with Principle, which features commentary that follow six themes present in Thoreau’s writings. The themes are:

  • Hearing That Different Drummer
  • Being Awake, Aware, and Alive
  • Examining Desperate and Deliberate Lives
  • Living in Society
  • Living in Nature
  • Confronting the Mean and the Sublime
  • Thoreau’s Concord, a 12-minute historical documentar that follows the same themes to explore both Concord and Henry David Thoreau s place in it.
  • Profiles in Civil Disobedience, a 12-minute examination of this philosophy as practiced by Wangari Maathai in Kenya, Tsunesaburo Makiguchi in Japan, and Nelson Mandela in South Africa.
  • World Leaders, a 4-minute glance at the impact of Thoreau’s writings on Leo Tolstoy, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Daisaku Ikeda, as well as on Life with Principle speakers Noam Chomsky, Daniel Ellsberg, and Howard Zinn.
  • The Boat Men: Bill and Ben, an animated short that is certain to stimulate discussion of the six themes.
  • A 16-page Study Guide, intended to provide an overall plan for implementing all of the Life with Principle materials.
  • A 51-page Thoreau Curriculum that details teaching strategies, relevant activities, and recommendations for further study.
  • An 11-page Commentary written by Thoreau scholar Bradley P. Dean (1954-2006). It reveals the origination of the six themes in Thoreau’s writings.
  • A full set of the Thoreau Society Bulletin, dating from 1941 to 2005, containing sixty years of articles about Thoreau’s life, literature, legacy, and the landscapes that inspired them.
  • The curriculum material was developed particularly for high school students, but the DVD would also be useful on the college level, particularly in lower-level environmental history courses that talk about Thoreau.