Daughters of Thoreau: Not Too Well Behaved

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On his deathbed, Henry David Thoreau said his only regret was that he had been too well behaved. Julia Butterfly Hill, Diane Wilson, and Terri Swearingen, three of the most imaginative, inspiring and courageous direct-action heroines of our era share their experiences and show us how courage and commitment can stop mountains from being moved. 


Julia Butterfly Hill, co-founder of the Circle of Life Foundation, became a world-famous inspiration to eco-activists, youth and concerned citizens everywhere after living 180 feet high atop a 1,000-year-old redwood tree in the forest south of Eureka, CA for 2 years in protest of the logging of old growth forests in the Pacific Northwest. She is the author of The Legacy of Luna and continues to be a tireless environmental activist, organizer and public speaker.


Diane Wilson, mother of five and a fourth-generation fisherman on the Texas Gulf Coast, has used civil disobediance to fight such chemical giants as Union Carbide and Dupont. In l995 she won "zero discharge" agreements from Formosa Plastics, one of the largest producers of PVC in the world, and Alcoa Aluminum, among the nation's largest polluters , by conducting three hunger strikes and attempting to sink her shrimp boat on top of a wastewater discharge pipe.


Terri Swearingen, RN, is an environmental and public health activist renowned for her struggles against dioxin-producing incinerators, especially the infamous WTI (the nation's largest) incinerator sited right next to a school in East Liverpool, Ohio. She founded the Tri-state Environmental Council (Ohio, West Virginia and Pennsylvania), testified before EPA, National Academy of Science and congressional committees and has won countless accolades from sources as varied as Time, E, Mother Jones, Glamour and the Presbyterian Church as well as the prestigious Goldman Prize for environmental activism , and the Ohio Environmental Council Lifetime Achievement Award. 

Bioneers Series III includes the following programs: 

  • BN301 Part 1: The Duh Principle: Better Safe Than Sorry
  • BN302 Part 2: Energy Security: the Growth of Soft Energy
  • BN303 Part 3: Light At The Edge of The World: Reinventing The Poetry of Diversity
  • BN304 Part 4: Greening Medicine: the Mainstreaming of Herbs
  • BN305 Part 5: Soil and Soul: The Future of Farming
  • BN306 Part 6: I Heard the Voice Of A Porkchop: The Theoretical Promise Versus The Actual Perils Of Genetically Modified Organisms
  • BN307 Part 7: Less Is More : Toward A Zero Discharge Industry
  • BN308 Part 8: Daughters of Thoreau: Not Too Well Behaved
  • BN309 Part 9: Plants and People: Who's Cultivating Who?
  • BN310 Part 10: Getting the Real Story: Bypassing Corporate Media
  • BN311 Part 11: Nature As Healer: Restoring Life As Community
  • BN312 Part 12: The Wonders of Gaia: Nature is Symbiotic
  • BN313 Part 13: Nature and Spirit: It's All Connected 

The Bioneers series consists of three sets of 13 programs each:

Bioneers Series I The Bioneers: Revolution From the Heart of Nature
Bioneers Series II Improving Environment By Changing The World
Bioneers Series III 

Inspired by the philosophies of the Deep Ecology movement, the Bioneers are heroic examples of people living as if nature mattered. Join us as we look deeply into the magic and mystery of the convergence between leading-edge science and ancient wisdom for a Declaration of Interdependence for the new millennium. Though these programs were produced in the 1990s the contents of this series are timelessly relevant. 

HOST: Michael Toms     INTERVIEW DATE: 2002            PROGRAM NUMBER: BN308