You Can't Get There from Here: A Year on the Fringes of a Shrinking World

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Rodale, Apr 2, 2005 - Travel - 325 pages
Globalization is really about people, about what happens when your culture shows up in my living room or when my way of life is tossed into your lap. It's the Somali restaurant in downtown Minneapolis. . . . It is challenging identities, creating new art forms, igniting new obsessions, and uniting long-lost families. Creation, destruction, reinvention. Things are getting very interesting.-from the Introduction.

For journalist Gayle Forman, the world is a strange and wonderful place. So when her husband suggested an extended round-the-globe adventure, she agreed as long as they stayed way off the beaten path. Forman, who had always considered herself an outsider, hoped to discover an affinity with those living on the margins in some of the most exotic spots on earth.

But a funny thing happened on her way to the fringe. She started to notice that the tentacles of globalization were changing everything, not only for people in the mainstream but for those on the edges, too. In You Can't Get There from Here, Forman invites us on a whirlwind ride to the mountain hideaways of Kazakhstan's Tolkien fanatics and inside the townships of South Africa's lost tribe of Israel. She introduces us to a wild assortment of characters: lovelorn Tongan transvestites, charismatic Tanzanian rap stars, precocious Cambodian street kids, out-of-work Dutch prostitutes. In the artful interplay of these eight lively, thoughtful, interwoven stories, she reveals how all of these diverse lives-as well as our own-are being inextricably altered by the ever-shrinking world that we all share. Because, she writes, "To forget the humanity in others is to risk forgetting one's own."

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bookwormteri - LibraryThing

Traveling around the world and seeking out the fringe societies within each society. Very entertaining. I enjoyed Bollywood and the fakaleiti of Tongo the most, but the entire book is great. Read full review

YOU CAN'T GET THERE FROM HERE: A Year on the Fringes of a Shrinking World

User Review  - Kirkus

Travels in search of the merely exotic.Debut author Forman, well known to readers of Seventeen, takes a teenager's delight in casting herself as an outcast, a "Weird Girl" whose journeys tend to ... Read full review


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About the author (2005)

Gayle Forman is an investigative journalist who’s traveled the world to report for such publications as the New York Times Magazine, The Nation, Glamour, Elle, Details, Travel & Leisure, Budget Travel, Jane, and Seventeen. She took her first overseas jaunt when she was seven—she brought her parents with her that time—and has been traveling ever since. Gayle and her husband, Nick Tucker, are back at home (for now) in New York City with their baby daughter, Willa.

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