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Off The Map: An Expedition Deep into Empire and the Global Economy Paperback – September 1, 2002
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From Library Journal
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Today's global economy is yesterday's empire. Imperialism in whatever guise is the same through time, penetrating every area of our lives, affecting whole cultures as well as the deep core of individuals. And maps have been the tools of empire, defining the territory to be exploited.
Off The Map is a unique exploration of globalization. Part history, part autobiography, and part fiction, it weaves together the history of the last 300 years of Western imperialism, the author's own story of sexual abuse in the 1950s, and a present-day horseback ride through the recently colonized Chicano world of New Mexico. The author takes us with her as she travels 'off the map' through the ancestral lands of her friend and traveling companion Snowflake Martinez, describing the Chicano people's struggle to survive the onslaught of a globalized world, and the ways in which that struggle has been replicated countless times. In a different voice, she reveals scenes from her childhood, her grandparents adorning themselves with artifacts symbolic of the British Empire, and her medical doctor father raping both her and her brother for twelve years. The political is deeply personal. And hope, according to Glendinning, resides in our creating new maps that chart worlds fashioned by love and respect for community, place and nature.
"A dazzling contribution to the critical study of globalization (qua imperialism)."-Devon Peña, author of Chicano Culture, Ecology, Politics: Subversive Kin
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Top Customer Reviews
How is today's global economy simply our latest expression of colonization?
How can our personal woundings become doorways to self-healing and form the basis of a commitment to sustainable planetary culture?
In her new book, Off the Map (An Expedition Deep Into Imperialism, the Global Economy, and Other Earthly Whereabouts, Pulitzer-nominated author and psychologist Dr. Chellis Glendinning explores these themes with a directness, clarity and emotional intensity that awakens the reader to profound insight about the nature of today's world.
In a lyrical braiding of three stories, she weaves the threads of her personal story of sexual abuse in a European-American (and Anglophile) family in the 1950s, the history of the last three hundred years of Western imperialism and a present-day horseback ride through the recently colonized Chicano world of northern New Mexico, where she currently resides.
Glendinning sees Off the Map as a continuation of her past work. "My focus is always the relationship between the personal and the political," she notes. "This book is an effort to make clear that everyone on the Earth is still experiencing the legacies of the classical age of empire, that corporate globalization is just the latest expression of Western imperialism and that, ultimately, it cannot work."
Throughout the book, we follow Glendinning's story of sexual abuse at the hands of her father, through her healing to the reclamation of her essential self and her reconnection to the power of land and nature.Read more ›
It's nice to see someone in my field working for rather than against the social forces that oppose the conformity and imperialism that show up nowadays as well-marketed, hyperconvenient, quick-fix "psychotherapy" (or is that psycho therapy?). Listening to the soul of the world, Chellis Glendinning hears in it an anguish echoing her own--and acts bravely and actively on behalf of both.
There's an annoying idea at my school (Pacifica) that all such activism = acting out, a kind of puerile and heroic impulsiveness--whereas working the imaginal, perhaps from within a well-lighted office on convenient days, should be enough. The example of the author's way of being indicates otherwise. We certainly need to monitor our activism, lest it become just another kind of colonizing arrogance so characteristic of our empire-driven civilization; at the same time, to say and do nothing except in private is not enlightened or soulful, it is cowardly.
Good work, Dr. Glendinning!
I teach college sociology and have read excerpts of this book to my students. Their response has been amazing, with many wiping tears from their eyes. I didn't want to put this book down, and friends have had the same experience. If you have read Glendinnings other works, you will be amazed at this book. She has truly stepped beyond herself.
The woman who brought us the powerful My Name is Chellis and I'm in Recovery From Western Civilization has given us another wildly potent book. In this expedition she weaves three story lines. One is a historical account of the current empire with dates, names, places and facts that clearly depicts a harrowing future (but very consistent with all the familiar assumptions and internalizations from previous empires). The second is a travelogue with Snowflake Martinez, a Chicano vaguero and friend. They travel by horse "off the map" - talking about their histories and "with open hearts, want to understand the distance that lies between us." The third story line is her personal account of her childhood - the memories of grandparents adorning themselves with artifacts symbolic of the British Empire as well as the disturbing accounts of her father raping both her and her brother (for 12 straight years!). The weaving is brilliant. As I write this I am very distraught because the book opens a different perspective of my childhood and who I am. The book demands that we ask ourselves: How deeply did we buy into the colonialists' psyche? What elements of the dominator Empire still resides in us? and Have we made a commitment to thwart the mega machine and to make amends with the colonized? It's a weaving of the personal with the political, the colonizer with the colonized, as well as history with the present. We cannot console ourselves into thinking that this empire building is from the past and that our personal lives have not been tainted by it.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I enjoyed this book as much as I did one of her others, My Name is Chellis, etc. It gives the reader a whole lot to think about, although I came away from it with feelings of great... Read morePublished on April 11, 2013 by Sue & Scott
As much as other reviewers were raving about this book, I thought I would like it just as much. I really thought it was a mediocre work of writing. Read morePublished on March 22, 2007 by Atlas Moth
Off The Maps: An Expedition Deep Into Empire And The Global Economy by psychologist, social activist, poet, and a pioneer in the field of ecopsychology Chellis Glendinning offers a... Read morePublished on December 5, 2002 by Midwest Book Review