Planetwalker: 22 Years of Walking. 17 Years of Silence.

( 9 )

Overview

When the struggle to save oil-soaked birds and restore blackened beaches left him feeling frustrated and helpless, John Francis decided to take a more fundamental and personal stand—he stopped using all forms of motorized transportation. Soon after embarking on this quest that would span two decades and two continents, he took a vow of silence that endured for 17 years. It began as a silent environmental protest, but as a young African-American man, walking across the country in the early 1970s, his idea of "the ...

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Planetwalker: 22 Years of Walking. 17 Years of Silence.

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Overview

When the struggle to save oil-soaked birds and restore blackened beaches left him feeling frustrated and helpless, John Francis decided to take a more fundamental and personal stand—he stopped using all forms of motorized transportation. Soon after embarking on this quest that would span two decades and two continents, he took a vow of silence that endured for 17 years. It began as a silent environmental protest, but as a young African-American man, walking across the country in the early 1970s, his idea of "the environment" expanded beyond concern about pollution and loss of habitat to include how we humans treat each other and how we can better communicate and work together to benefit the earth.

Through his silence and walking, he learned to listen, and along the way, earned college and graduate degrees in science and environmental studies. An amazing human-interest story with a vital message, Planetwalker is also an engaging coming-of-age pilgrimage.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"It’s a remarkably insightful, poetic, and inspiring story, one that’s sure to make readers think more carefully about their own styles of living." — Booklist
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781426204050
  • Publisher: National Geographic Society
  • Publication date: 4/21/2009
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 489,025
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

John Francis, Ph.D., is the founder and director of PlanetWalk, a nonprofit environmental education organization. He travels around the world speaking on pilgrimage and change, and on Planetlines, an environmental studies curriculum based on the walking pilgrimage.

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Reading Group Guide

1. Planetwalker has many themes, like walking, communication, history, and environment. What are some of the other themes that weave their way through John's journey and that can be found throughout the book? What are the overarching themes of the book?

2. What impact did silence have on John's journey, for everyone involved, including you, the reader?

3. Examine John's paintings and drawings. What are the major themes in his artwork? Can you see changes in the style and character of his work as he walks across the country?

4. Recall John's reference to the importance of humor, and of not taking oneself too seriously. Where in the book are the most humorous moments? When does John laugh at himself?

5. What is the main message of Planetwalker?

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 28, 2013

    One of the best books I've ever read.

    One of the best books I've ever read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 4, 2011

    Well written

    Really cool book, towards the end it does drag on a bit.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 6, 2010

    Environmental adventure

    I bought this for the adventure but was inspired by the level of John's commitment to the environment. Though I got sucked in to the story, I also felt that there were too many jumps in time leaving me wonder what had happened. Overall, I loved this book and would recommend it to others.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2008

    This is a Moving Title

    I'm not going to write much because there's not much to say. This book is incredible. It describes the journey of one man and how he took walking to the extreme. It details his struggles along the way. This book will move you to better yourself. An outstanding read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 30, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews

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