For the last 35 years Rick Steves has been showing Americans how to travel on a budget around Europe. His travel guides, his tour company and now his phenomenal TV show--Europe Through the Back Door--have showcased his charming, winning, almost bumpkin-ish persona that has made him America's favorite travel guide. Throughout these years though--at times subliminally, other times overtly--he has realized that he has been teaching Americans how to travel politically. Travel can be many things. Some choose a sunny break on the beach for a change in weather without leaving their cultural comfort zone. Others chose a life-changing adventure that makes them a cultural hybrid, shakes their self-assuredness, and rearranges their world view. The value of that experience is up to you and is determined by how you choose to travel. You can travel to relax, have fun...and learn almost nothing. Or you can travel to broaden your perspectives and learn. Time with a dervish in Turkey can be a cruise-ship entertainment option or a spiritual experience. This book is a guide for those with an appetite to learn. If you make your travels a political act, your vacation can be the most intensely educational time of your life. Rather than coming home fatter, you can come home smarter--with a better understanding of the interconnectedness of today's world and just how our nation fits in. As we've learned in the first decade of the 21st century, the challenges that will face our nation through the rest of this new century require a broader and more international approach. Those who make travel a political act come home inspired and better able to help confront these issues; it can also make your life more meaningful, challenging, and fun.
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May 03, 2009
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