Salopek is globally known for his project – the ‘Out of Eden’ walk that has seen him retrace our ancestors’ ancient migration on foot out of Africa and all over the globe.
The 21,000-mile, multiyear odyssey began in Ethiopia—our evolutionary ‘Eden’— in 2013 and will end at the tip of South America, after almost a decade.
The ambitious initiative is supported by the National Geographic Society and the Knight Foundation, with Paul delving into several important issues relevant to our times, such as climate change, technological innovation, mass migration, and so on, recording the stories of people he meets every day – from villagers and nomads to soldiers and artists.
Earlier, Paul’s Pulitzer in 1998 was for explanatory reporting on the Human Genome Diversity Project, and in 2001 for reporting on disease epidemic in Africa.
His attempt, an experiment in ‘slow journalism’, will be discussed at the US Consulate in Chennai today, at 3 pm.
Talking to DT Next before his address at the US Consulate, Paul tells us that his experience in Chennai thus far has been very rewarding.
“My colleagues and I have shared immersive reporting tools at a workshop for working journalists—the Out of Eden Walk ‘slow journalism’ workshop last week—and the National Geographic Photo Camp more recently trained 18 young aspiring storytellers in the fundamentals of writing and photography,” he tells us.
He stresses on the need to foster a different breed of journalists. “We’re building a storytelling community across the globe—one that emphasises slowing down, going deeply into stories, and creating more meaningful narrative from current events—not shallow, drive-by reportage,” Paul adds.
The event will be an interactive session with the audience allowed to engage with Paul after his speech.
The 56-year-old was born in California in 1962 and raised in central Mexico. As a writer and journalist, he has travelled to more than 50 countries and earned most of America’s top print media awards.