Archive - June 23, 2010

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Writers From the Peace Corps: The Lost Generation, Part Thirteen
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Politicis and Prose–Good Friends to Peace Corps Writers

Writers From the Peace Corps: The Lost Generation, Part Thirteen

Travel Now, Write Later Anyone who has read The Sun Also Rises knows that this novel is also a wonderful travel book. Hemingway’s description of a bus trip to Spain is classic travel prose: “The road went along the summit of the Col and then dropped down, and the driver had to honk, and slow up, and turn out to avoid running into two donkeys that were sleeping in the road.” A trip like that in Spain in the 1920s is something most Volunteers can identify with today from their own overseas experiences. Paul Theroux, it is generally agreed, reinvented the art of travel writing with The Great Railway Bazaar, published in 1975. He returned the genre to the place it held when Mary Kingsley and Evelyn Waugh were crossing Africa and globe-trotting the world. Many Peace Corps writers have followed, most notably Mike Tidwell, Thurston Clarke, Jeffrey Tayler, Karen . . .

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Politicis and Prose–Good Friends to Peace Corps Writers

When the 25th Reunion of RPCVs took place in Washington, D.C. in 1986, I wanted a book store to  sell the books written by RPCVs. I contacted Carla Cohen at her relatively new bookstore, Politics and Prose, up on Connecticut Avenue, and asked Carla if she would set up a table and sell books under the tent on the Mall at our reunion. I was a nobody, our reunion was not important, but Carla loved the Peace Corps and she set up a table of books that I had recommended and featured Peace Corps writers for the very first time. Since then, Carla has always had a open door for Peace Corps writers. I have read in her famous book store, as as Norm Rush, Peter Hessler, Paul Theroux, Maureen Orth, Tony D’Souza and many, many others. Twice over the years I arranged Peace Corps readings at the store by Peace Corps writers. It always only . . .

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