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An Unnatural History of UCSC An Unnatural History of UCSC
Editor: Jeff Arnett

Book Description

Since it first opened, UCSC's 2000 acres of forest have lured students seeking adventure, a respite from work, and spiritual guidance into the wandering wood. An evocative landscape of the mind that resembles sites in Spenser's Faerie Queene and Tolkien's modern allegories, the campus contains places symbolically named "Elfland." "Faerie Ring Redwood Grove," "End of the World Pool," "Wayfarer's Den," "Den of Justice," "Dell of the Winds," "Bridge to Heaven," and "Peace Fort." Stories abound throughout UCSC's forty year history of inspiration, illumination and enlightenment available in the backwood trails on campus.

An Unnatural History of UCSC, a new student-written publication, gathers some of this evocative, sometimes poignant, history through alumni reminiscences, newspaper accounts, and photographic archives. One chapter, "Elfland: A Trip Back in Time," for example, describes a poetics of space (Gaston Bachelard's eponymous term), revealing a campus mythic legacy previously available to most of us almost exclusively through oral tradition.

If you're interested in finding out what a deer-cow or a morad is, or you're curious about John o' the Woods or King of the Elves, two inhabitants at one time or another of our campus, check out this book. You may discover a hermetic aspect of college familiar to your parents' generation.

--Don Rothman
Senior Lecturer Emeritus, Writing
Director Emeritus, Central California Writing Project


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