Travel writing must confront the real world

“Though many landscapes are increasingly sullied, that need not spell the decline of travel writing. It does mean that travel writing must confront the real world, slums and all, rather than escape into an airbrushed version of a more rustic past.”
–Robert D. Kaplan, The Ends of the Earth (1996)

Posted by | Comments (1)  | April 5, 2005
Category: Travel Quote of the Day

One Response to “Travel writing must confront the real world”

  1. AJ Hoge Says:

    I think this is something I appreciate about the vagabonding/hobopoet approach to travel. Its important to confront the ugly as well as the beautiful…. the horrific as well as the glorious.

    This is one of the great challenges of travel… and what distinguishes a journey from a “vacation”. Think of the Odyssey, The Iliad, etc. In mythological journeys, there were always monsters and hardships to confront.

    And lets face it, there was never a perfect rustic past. Poverty, cruelty, ugliness, war, lying, and exploitation are as old as the human race. Part of “deliberate travel” is confronting these truths, however much we dislike them.

    Again, a great quote.