Santa Clara University
Sierra College Press
Paperback, 460 pages, $19.95
The essays, poetry, and stories presented in The Illuminated Landscape encompass the entire Sierra Nevada experience: an ancient creation myth involving an unlikely contest between Hawk and Crow, vignettes of life in mining camps, a curious deer taking a stroll through Beetle Rock, the impact a simple camping trip can make, the solace felt by a family held in an internment camp, and an enlightening attempt to climb Matterhorn Peak. Excerpts from well-known writers such as Henry David Thoreau, Mark Twain, Mary Austin, Wallace Stegner, Gary Snyder, T. Coraghessan Boyle, and Ishmael Reed as well as original works from local authors reveal how important the Sierra has become to our cultural psyche as an irreplaceable refuge for our spirits.
The Illuminated Landscape comes at a critical point. With the power of the written word to inspire, energize, and challenge, this anthology shines a light on what is at risk for the Sierra Nevada today and reinforces the importance of sustaining its beauty and ecological diversity.
A Sierra Nevada native and current resident, Gary Noy has taught history at Sierra College from 1987 to the present. A graduate of UC Berkeley and CSU Sacramento, he is the founder and director of the Sierra College Center for Sierra Nevada Studies and coordinator of the college’s Sierra Nevada Virtual Museum. He is the author of Distant Horizon: Documents from the 19th Century American West.
Rick Heide has an M.A. in Latin American history from the University of London, and a B.A. in Latin American studies from UC Berkeley. He is the editor of Under the Fifth Sun. He was a member of the San Francisco Bay Area publishing community for over twenty-five years and now lives in the Sierra Nevada foothills.
Joe Medeiros has hiked and studied in the Sierra for more than 35 years, lead countless trips of students and mountain enthusiasts, and served as a National Park Ranger at Devils Postpile National Monument in Mammoth Lakes, California.
Joe taught biological sciences at Sierra College from 1990 until his retirement in 2009. Joe is the co-coordinator of the college’s Sierra Nevada Lecture Series, and the major force behind the establishment of Sierra College’s People and Culture Days and the annual Earth Day celebration each Spring.
Joe also taught for many years at Modesto Community College and was the Founder and Director of that college’s outstanding Great Valley Museum. He was instrumental in the massive expansion of Henry Coe State Park in Morgan Hill, California, and in the establishment of Great Valley Grasslands State Park in Gustine, California.
Joe was honored as Sierra College Teacher of the Year in 1999, 2003, 2005 and 2007. In 2009, Joe received the prestigious “Placer Conservator Award” from the Placer Land Trust.