Garbage Land

Garbage Land


Unable to quell her curiosity about where, exactly, her garbage was headed after her local ”san man” tossed it into his truck, Elizabeth Royte set off on a cross-country journey to scuzzy waterways, sewage-purifying plants, recycling facilities, and diaper-strewn landfills. As she wades through sludge-filled canals and a labyrinth of cranky, obstinate waste-management middlemen not unlike Tony Soprano, she finds that garbage is everywhere and nowhere at the same time; recycling, she admits in defeat, yields few environmental benefits and ”merely made it easier for individuals to keep consuming and discarding.” Royte recounts her adventures in detailed — if overearnest — prose that’s alive with observation in Garbage Land. But she can’t seem to shake the vague tone of helplessness that weighs this sometimes tedious book beneath a big, stinky pile of. . .guilt.

Garbage Land
  • Book