Under the Stars: How America Fell in Love with Camping

According to a recent TV interview, when Michelle Obama retires from being First Lady she and Oprah are going glamping. I suspect that glamping is a far cry from my own camping experiences.  Every vacation, every three-day weekend and many other weekends were spent in a tent. What was the appeal of having our camp site ravaged by a sick bear in Yellowstone, being attacked by hordes of deer fly in Glacier, or nursing blistered feet up the switchbacks of the southwest canyons? White sets out to explore the very American need to chase the wilderness, commune with nature, and escape the pressures of civilization in exchange for discomfort and even danger. He tries every experience for himself from stark (as in stark naked) survival camping to the RV community to glamping on a wild animal preserve. His vivid accounts are set against the history and literature of this national phenomenon. He was originally inspired by Thoreau’s Walden and his own adventures are interspersed with accounts of John Muir, Teddy Roosevelt and many lesser known characters.

Review by Janet T., Reference Librarian

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