Is our era both the most wondrous and the most horrific time ever to be alive in the history of the human race?
Award-winning travel journalist Lee Foster thinks so. His book, Travels in an American Imagination: The Spiritual Geography of Our Time, consists of 25 essays, each with a photo illustration, in which Foster evokes a place in his worldwide travels and then raises a question about the spiritual geography of our era.
Foster’s work has won eight Lowell Thomas Awards, the highest awards in travel writing, including him being named Travel Journalist of the Year (Silver Winner). More than 200 of his worldwide coverages can be seen at www.fostertravel.com.
The book is Foster’s answer to the question, “How does the typical modern person balance what is wondrous and what is horrific about life in our time?”
Foster suggests that a balanced perception of modern life, with sufficient imagination, can enable a modern person to live in a healthy, constructive manner and not be overwhelmed by pessimism or despair.
Foster believes that modern life is defined by the constant barrage of polar positive and negative experiences on the average person. He feels that people today can find an inner peace if they can balance these assaults on their sensibilities. Balance occurs when a person achieves a deeper understanding of the current human drama.
Each chapter advances the book’s premise. For example, the chapter "Bali: The Search for Community" starts with Foster's observation of some close-knit village dancers in Bali and then meditates on the quality of community, or lack of community, in his life as a modern man in Berkeley, California.
Foster views modern life with an unflinching clarity. In his chapter "Brazil: The Decline of the Environment," he describes the experience of walking in a perishing rain forest with its irreversible loss of species. Yet Foster feels that today’s person must also acknowledge many positive aspects of life in this era. His chapter "Canaveral: The Adventure of Space Flight," for instance, describes being in Florida at the space launch site, celebrating one of the major achievements of mankind in our time.
The book is a highly personal memoir about something in which Foster is truly an expert; his own life, thought, and feelings. He finds much that is wondrous in the details of everyday life. Yet he is not interested in anything eccentric or accidental about his life. What interests him is how his life and thoughts parallel those of the Everyman and Everywoman of our time. The book stimulates and challenges a reader to make a similar assessment of his or her life.
Ebook/Bookstore Category--Travel Essays/Travel Literature: An award-winning travel writer explores what is wondrous and what is horrific about life in our times.
About the Author:
Lee Foster began his publishing career with a novel about the Vietnam era, The Message of April Fools, and a literary memoir about growing up in a Minnesota America at mid 20th century, Just 25 Cents and Three Wheaties Boxtops. He was part of the energy-efficient-living/organic gardening movement in California, which he described in his book Backyard Farming. He has been known in recent decades for his award-winning travel writing/photography. He was the first travel writer ever to publish profitably in the new electronic online scene, starting in 1983 with CompuServe, a contract that continued until 2001. He has won seven Lowell Thomas Awards, including being named Lowell Thomas Travel Journalist of the Year (Silver Winner). His Foster Travel Publishing website (www.fostertravel.com) presents more than 200 destination articles, with photos, on his worldwide travels, plus his books and apps. As a travel photographer, he has images in more than 225 Lonely Planet books. His latest Lowell Thomas Award was for his travel guidebook Northern California History Weekends (Globe Pequot). His most recent books are The Photographer's Guide to San Francisco and The Photographer’s Guide to Washington DC (both from Countryman Press). An early adapter of the new app publishing opportunities in travel, Foster has three apps in the iTunes App Store, which are San Francisco Travel Photo Guide, Washington DC Travel Photo Guide, and Berkeley Essential Guide (all from Sutro Media).
Contact Information for the Author:
Lee Foster, Foster Travel Publishing, P.O. Box 5715, Berkeley, CA 94705, 510-549-2202, [email protected]