Following the Wrong God Home: Footloose in an American Dream

Following the Wrong God Home: Footloose in an American Dream

by Clive Scott Chisholm, William Kittredge
     
 

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Clive Scott Chisholm wryly describes himself as a “fugitive from the American Dream.” A displaced Canadian and a legally “registered alien,” Chisholm set out from his home in upstate New York in 1985 to discover the origins of that dream. In Following the Wrong God Home, he recounts his personal odyssey, describing the people he

Overview


Clive Scott Chisholm wryly describes himself as a “fugitive from the American Dream.” A displaced Canadian and a legally “registered alien,” Chisholm set out from his home in upstate New York in 1985 to discover the origins of that dream. In Following the Wrong God Home, he recounts his personal odyssey, describing the people he encountered and the unforgettable stories they told.

Chisholm’s solo journey on foot from the Missouri River to Salt Lake City retraced the 1,100-mile trek of nineteenth-century Mormon pioneers. In this account, he juxtaposes that Mormon search for the dream of “community” against the modern search for the American dream of “individuality,” muses over how much and how little things have changed in the century-and-a-half since 1847, and creates a narrative informed by the American dreamers he came across from Omaha to Salt Lake City.

Editorial Reviews

Western Historical Quarterly

“[Chisholm’s] wide-ranging curiosity delights in all things western, from barbed wire, bison, and brands, to water, watermelons, and windmills. His perceptive insights are worth a second read. . . . At the end of four hundred pages, I was not ready to stop.”—Polly Aird, Western Historical Quarterly

— Polly Aird

Utah Historical Quarterly

“More than just an interesting travel narrative.”—Utah Historical Quarterly
Oklahoma Observer

“A sometimes brutally frank debunking of both Mormon and American Dream myths and an eclectic and compelling narrative.”—Oklahoma Observer
Sun Times

“A classic that will stand beside Steinbeck’s Travels with Charley and Least Heat Moon’s Blue Highways for years to come.”—Andrew Armitage, Sun Times (Canada)
Western Historical Quarterly - Polly Aird

“[Chisholm’s] wide-ranging curiosity delights in all things western, from barbed wire, bison, and brands, to water, watermelons, and windmills. His perceptive insights are worth a second read. . . . At the end of four hundred pages, I was not ready to stop.”—Polly Aird, Western Historical Quarterly
Library Journal
Chisholm is a retired Utah State University professor and a poet, novelist, and essayist whose work has appeared in numerous journals. He is also a displaced Canadian, now living in upstate New York, who journeyed solo on foot along the Mormon Trail in 1985-from the Missouri River to Salt Lake City-retracing the 1000-mile trek of 19th-century Mormon pioneers. The purpose of his trip was to play off the Mormon search for the dream of "community" against the modern search for the American dream of "individuality." In this insightful and amusing account of his odyssey, he shares his experiences, describing the people he encountered along the way and the stories they told, and offers his thoughts on the differing manners of Americans, Canadians, and Mormons of any nationality. A former Mormon himself, Chisholm intersperses bits of Mormon history throughout the text and critically discusses some aspects of the religion. His prose is humorous and filled with sparkling phrases. For all travel collections.-George M. Jenks, Bucknell Univ., Lewisburg, PA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780803224315
Publisher:
UNP - Bison Books
Publication date:
05/01/2009
Series:
Outdoor Lives Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
424
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 2.80(d)

Meet the Author


Clive Scott Chisholm (1936–2007) was an associate professor and former head of the Department of Communication at Utah State University. His poetry, fiction, and essays have appeared in numerous journals. William Kittredge is the award-winning author of several books, including A Hole in the Sky: A Memoir, and most recently, The Next Rodeo: New and Selected Essays.

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