The Winds of Vancouver: A Nomadic Report from the North Pacific Edge, by Kenneth White, 2013
White, Kenneth (2013) The Winds of Vancouver: A Nomadic Report from the North Pacific Edge, Aberdeen: Reseach Institute of Irish and Scottish Studies, pp.114 + vi. ISBN: 978-1-906108-24-3
Kenneth White has been living and working in France since 1968. The founder of the International Institute of Geopoetics and, from 1983 to 1996, Professor of Modern Poetics at the Sorbonne, his poetry, essays and travel writings, published in both French and English, and translated into a wide range of other languages, have won many distinguished prizes.
His writings are explorations across a vast range of intellectual territories, and also, in what he calls his ‘waybooks’, chart his actual travels across varied geographic territories. The Winds of Vancouver records a journey from British Columbia to Alaska, retracing the itineraries of explorers, naturalists and environmentalists, many of them, such as John Muir, nomadic Scots like White himself. The narrative records a series of encounters, both historical and contemporary, between the modern and the primordial, as White goes in search of what is beyond the limits of the known world.
Hailed by many as Scotland’s most important poetthinker since Hugh MacDiarmid, and by many others as one of the most significant writers working anywhere today, Kenneth White’s writing co-ordinates the intensity of immediate responsiveness to the natural world with a perspective on universal history which mounts a powerful challenge to the values of modernity.