Travel Writing: A Very Short Introduction

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2020-10-01
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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The history of travel writing goes back thousands of years. Long practised in several different cultures and languages around the world, it is as varied as the people who journey and their reasons for doing so. Pilgrims and atheists, agents of imperialism and revolutionaries, aristocrats and fugitive slaves, tourists and refugees, and scientists and artists, are all among its many types of author. Its different forms include the diary, letters, reports, guidebooks, journalism, poetry and blogs..

This Very Short Introduction examines the meanings and uses of travel writing from its appearance on clay tablets to the digital age. It shows how the genre not only describes places and the journeys to them, but also communicates the cultural and personal values of its authors, reinforcing and challenging their sense of identity and of the foreign. Tim Youngs discusses questions of the genre's definition and its literary forms, the representation of self and other, the effect of modes of transport on authors' experiences and their stories of travel, and attitudes towards the environment. Throughout he demonstrates how travel writing is a diverse genre that offers a full range of perspectives, often alert to its own processes and viewpoints, and one that casts a critical eye on its authors' home countries as well as on their destinations.

The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Author Biography

Tim Youngs is Professor of English and Travel Studies at Nottingham Trent University, where he is also director of the Centre for Travel Writing Studies. He has written or edited several books on travel writing, including The Cambridge Companion to Travel Writing (CUP, 2002), and is editor of the journal Studies in Travel Writing.

Table of Contents

1. What is travel writing?
2. Forms of travel writing
3. Modes of travel
4. The self in travel writing
5. The other in travel writing
6. The environment in travel writing
7. The way ahead
Further reading

Supplemental Materials

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The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

The Used, Rental and eBook copies of this book are not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

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