- Paperback: 209 pages
- Publisher: Nation Books; First Printing edition (May 5, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1568584350
- ISBN-13: 978-1568584355
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 104 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #912,533 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Travel as a Political Act Paperback – May 5, 2009
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This is a great travel book that doesn't preach but encourages our experiencing and interaction with different cultures, religions, countries and the people who live there. the chapter on Iran, is compelling, but too far out of my comfort zone to want to visit. The chapter on Morocco & Turkey and talks of towns with large populations that follow Secular Islam like Istanbul & Tangier that are welcoming to Christian and other foreign travelers makes me want to visit. And according to Rich Steves, one of the more enjoyable experiences you'll have in Morocco is walking through Tangier's at night, to experience the people and their welcoming attitude to all visitors.
Rich covers the political conflicts with Israel and the Palestinians, where you come away understanding the pain the Palestinians must feel having their home land taken away by a league of foreign governments. And that their most likely will not be a good solution to this conflict as long as the two societies stay separated by walls where the populations are not able to meet and find some common ground.
The book also delves into systems and governments that work better than are own in some aspects of community life and how we may want to take some of these practices to see if they work well back home in the USA.
Mark Twain "Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow mindedness".
With me, he's preaching to the choir. I'm the kind of traveler that would never, ever go to a destination and then not leave my hotel, or take a cruise and simply go shopping in port, not taking the time to learn anything about the culture and history of the place I'm visiting. I feel that these things are vitally important to my growth as a human being and my understanding of the world around me. So, this kind of discussion is right up my alley.
I've heard many people say that they think the most compelling chapters are the ones on Iran and drugs. However, I was really intrigued by the parts about Central America and Denmark. Everyone who reads this book is going to find a chapter that particularly speaks to them.
I wrote about this book in a travel community online and someone actually replied that she thinks Steves has no business talking about politics. That really made me shake my head in wonder. Don't all American citizens have the right, and in fact the responsibility to talk about politics? Shouldn't we all be encouraging each other to be the best citizens that we can be? I think so. Rick Steves thinks so, too. And he thinks something as simple as taking a vacation can help us be better citizens. I heartily agree.
What a great way to look at travel and what a wonderful way he has of seeing the world and it’s people - with so much more in common with each other than what divides us. I also appreciate his clear thinking on some of the “problem areas” on this planet we all share.
Most recent customer reviews
Before I read this, I knew I wanted to travel. I haven't had an opportunity to do so yet, but when my time comes, it will be for...Read more