"Lands of Lost Borders carried me up into a state of openness and excitement I haven’t felt for years. It’s a modern classic." —Pico Iyer A brilliant, fierce writer makes her debut with this enthralling travelogue and memoir of her journey by bicycle along the Silk Road—an illuminating and thought-provoking fusion of The Places in Between, Lab Girl, and Wild that dares us to challenge the limits we place on ourselves and the natural world. As a teenager, Kate Harris realized that the career she craved—to be an explorer, equal parts swashbuckler and metaphysician—had gone extinct. From what she could tell of the world from small-town Ontario, the likes of Marco Polo and Magellan had mapped the whole earth; there was nothing left to be discovered. Looking beyond this planet, she decided to become a scientist and go to Mars. In between studying at Oxford and MIT, Harris set off by bicycle down the fabled Silk Road with her childhood friend Mel. Pedaling mile upon mile in some of the remotest places on earth, she realized that an explorer, in any day and age, is the kind of person who refuses to live between the lines. Forget charting maps, naming peaks: what she yearned for was the feeling of soaring completely out of bounds. The farther she traveled, the closer she came to a world as wild as she felt within. Lands of Lost Borders is the chronicle of Harris’s odyssey and an exploration of the importance of breaking the boundaries we set ourselves; an examination of the stories borders tell, and the restrictions they place on nature and humanity; and a meditation on the existential need to explore—the essential longing to discover what in the universe we are doing here. Like Rebecca Solnit and Pico Iyer, Kate Harris offers a travel account at once exuberant and reflective, wry and rapturous. Lands of Lost Borders explores the nature of limits and the wildness of the self that can never fully be mapped. Weaving adventure and philosophy with the history of science and exploration, Lands of Lost Borders celebrates our connection as humans to the natural world, and ultimately to each other—a belonging that transcends any fences or stories that may divide us.
lands of lost borders
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Stories set in the deserts and mountains of California draw on the relationship of people to the land
Over the past century, women artists and writers have expressed diverse creative responses to the landscape of the Southwest. The Desert Is No Lady provides a cross-cultureal perspective on women by examining Anglo, Hispanic, and Native American women's artistic expressions and the effect of their art in defining the southwestern landscape. The Desert Is No Lady has been made into a motion picture of the same title by Women Make movies, New York, NY "A beautifully crafted book. . . . Although it varies in intensity, the response of women to the environment is virtually always different from the male frontiersman's view of the land as inanimate, boundless, conquerable and controllable." ÑPolly Wells Kaufman in Women's Review of Books "A powerful masterpiece." ÑEve Gruntfest in The Professional Geographer
From endless sand dunes and prickly cacti to shimmering mirages and green oases, deserts evoke contradictory images in us. They are lands of desolation, but also of romance, of blistering Mojave heat and biting Gobi cold. Covering a quarter of the earth’s land mass and providing a home to half a billion people, they are both a physical reality and landscapes of the mind. The idea of the desert has long captured Western imagination, put on display in films and literature, but these portrayals often fail to capture the true scope and diversity of the people living there. Bridging the scientific and cultural gaps between perception and reality, The Desert celebrates our fascination with these arid lands and their inhabitants, as well as their importance both throughout history and in the world today. Covering an immense geographical range, Michael Welland wanders from the Sahara to the Atacama, depicting the often bizarre adaptations of plants and animals to these hostile environments. He also looks at these seemingly infertile landscapes in the context of their place in history—as the birthplaces not only of critical evolutionary adaptations, civilizations, and social progress, but also of ideologies. Telling the stories of the diverse peoples who call the desert home, he describes how people have survived there, their contributions to agricultural development, and their emphasis on water and its scarcity. He also delves into the allure of deserts and how they have been used in literature and film and their influence on fashion, art, and architecture. As Welland reveals, deserts may be difficult to define, but they play an active role in the evolution of our global climate and society at large, and their future is of the utmost importance. Entertaining, informative, and surprising, The Desert is an intriguing new look at these seemingly harsh and inhospitable landscapes.
"In a series of sketches, regionalist writers such as Alice Cary, Mary E. Wilkins Freeman, Sarah Orne Jewett, Grace King, Alice Dunbar-Nelson, Sui Sin Far, and Mary Austin critique the approach to regional subjects characteristic of local color and present narrators who serve as cultural interpreters for persons often considered "out of place" by urban readers. In their approach to these writers, Fetterley and Pryse offer contemporary readers an alternative vantage point from which to consider questions of regions and regionalism in the global economy of our own time."--Jacket.
The scenery of the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada Range offers inviting landscapes. This work begins with a geologic and geographic overview of the Sierra, then follows a south-to-north itinerary along Highway 395, passing 14, 494-foot Mt Whitney and the steep escarpment of the eastern side.
This book introduces us to female perspectives on nature. Over 90 selections, from Emily Dickinson to Alice Walker, span a century and encompass the voices of a variety of women--some known for their writing on nature, and several outstanding new voices