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 travelling 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 12 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
Chellis Glendinning is a psychologist and award-winning author whose works include the acclaimed My Name is Chellis and I’m in Recovery from Western Civilization, and When Technology Wounds, nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. A pioneer in the field of ecopsychology, her specialty is the ecological and human costs of technological progress. She lives in rural New Mexico, where she works with Chicano and Native people for environmental justice and cultural preservation.