"Searching for Natural Darkness in an Age of Artificial Light"
On this installment of ST, we present an interesting discussion with Paul Bogard, who teaches creative nonfiction in the Writing Program at James Madison University. Bogard has a new book out that's getting glowing reviews from near and far. It's called "The End of Night: Searching for Natural Darkness in an Age of Artificial Light" --- and The Boston Globe says it's "a lyrical, far-reaching book. Part elegy, part call-to-arms...[this work] feels like an essential addition to the literature of nature." And another critic, in the pages of Booklist, summarized it like so: "In this artful blend of environmental and cultural history, Bogard manages to make a book about light pollution pure reading pleasure. As he travels the world looking for dark spaces that best reveal the night skies, Bogard considers our affinity for artificial light, the false sense of security it provides, and its implications. He studies the skies of Las Vegas and Paris, Walden Pond and Mantua, Italy. He walks with lighting designers, naturalists, and astronomers while pondering the best way to embrace the night. Authors such as Thoreau and Henry Beston serve as hallmarks, while the thoughtfulness with which Bogard considers such broadly diverse issues as the impact of working the night shift and the persecution of bats, quintessential creatures of the night, is inspiring. Bogard urges readers to weigh the ramifications of light pollution and our failure to address them, illustrating his arguments with photographs that prove his point (most staggeringly, a satellite shot of Europe’s light pollution). [This book is] smart, surprising, and thoroughly enjoyable."