Thursday, November 07, 2013


Coney Islands of Horror

Joseph Wood Krutch (1893-1970), The Forgotten Peninsula: A Naturalist in Baja California (New York: William Sloane Associates, 1961; rpt. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1986), pp. 275-276:
One after another the most accessible mountains and beaches are turning into Coney Islands of horror to which the hordes come, not to make contact with natural beauty, but to invade it with radios and all the other paraphernalia necessary to transform mountain or beach into a noisy slum so little different from the slums of the city as to make one wonder why they bother to come. At the same time, one after another of the superlatively beautiful but remoter regions of the earth are being taken possession of by the rich and the footloose for whom eager entrepreneurs build luxury hotels and casinos in which the patrons who have come thousands of miles may engage in much the same amusements they might engage in at home—which activity they sometimes call, goodness only knows why, "getting away from it all."

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