Twenty West: The Great Road Across America

SUNY Press
Free sample

“I know US 20, I live on it, grew up near it, commute to work on it, and have run on it most mornings for twenty-five years. It has become the Main Street of my life. I am fond of it, and want to tell its very American story.” — from the Introduction

Whether he’s on foot, in a car, or even in a canoe, Mac Nelson will delight readers with his rambling, westward depiction of America as seen from the shoulders of its longest road, US Route 20. As the “0” in its route number indicates, US 20 is a coast-to-coast road, crossing twelve states as it meanders 3,300 miles from Boston, Massachusetts, to Newport, Oregon. Nelson, an experienced “shunpiker,” travels west along the Great Road, ruminating on history, literature, scenery, geology, politics, wilderness, the Great Plains, and national parks—whatever the most interesting aspects of a particular region seem to be. Beginning with the great writers and founders of religion in the East who lived and wrote on or near US 20, including Anne Bradstreet, Phyllis Wheatley, and Sylvia Plath, then crossing the plains to the forests, mountains, and deserts of the West, Nelson’s journey on this beloved road is personal and idiosyncratic, serious and comic. More than a mile-by-mile guidebook, Twenty West offers a glimpse of a boyish and very American fascination with the road that will entice the traveler in all of us to take the long way home.
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About the author

Mac Nelson is Distinguished Teaching Professor of English at SUNY Fredonia and coeditor (with Elizabeth Hoffman Nelson) of Telling the Stories: Essays on American Indian Literatures and Cultures and coauthor (with Diana Hume George) of Epitaph and Icon: A Field Guide to the Old Burying Grounds of Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket.

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Additional Information

Publisher
SUNY Press
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Published on
Mar 10, 2010
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Pages
354
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ISBN
9780791478257
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Language
English
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Genres
Travel / Essays & Travelogues
Travel / United States / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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