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Travellers, Novelists, and Gentlemen

Constructing Male Narrative Personae in British Travel Books, from the Beginnings to the Second World War

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Grzegorz Moroz

Travel writing studies have been focused mostly on women travel writers and on representations of the world and the other. This book adopts a novel perspective which diachronically combines the issues of genre and gender. The author postulates that the genre of the travel book in the British literary tradition was established and developed in the eighteenth century alongside the novel and the autobiography. He cogently presents the developments in earlier non-fictional travel narratives in order to expose both their similarities and fundamental differences from modern travel books. Underlying his research is the conviction that the narrative personae of travel books have always been placed in the foreground because of the key role of sentimental discourse and celebrity culture. This book competently analyses the main trends, techniques and constraints in the process of constructing male narrative personae in British travel books written between 1755 and 1939.

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A List of Illustrations

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Fig. 1. The title page of Coryat’s Crudities. From: Coryat’s Crudities, (London: W. S., 1611), title page. Fig. 2. The first out of sixteen aquatints used by William Gilpin to illustrate the notion of picturesque beauty in Observations on the River Wye. (The aquatints were not given captions by Gilpin, possibly in keeping with his intention of showing only an idea, not a portrait of a given site.) From: William Gilpin, Observations on the River Wye, And Several Parts of South Wales, &c. Relative Chiefly to Picturesque Beauty: Made in the Summer of the Year 1770 (London: Pallas Athene, 2005), p. 2. Fig. 3 “Steps Leading to the Church no. 1” and the notes from Handel’s slow movement in the fifth grand concerto. From: Samuel Butler, Alps & Sanctuaries of Piedmont and the Canton Ticino (London: Alan Sutton, 1986), pp. 98.99. (p. 144) Fig. 4. “Chapel of S. Carlo, Piora.” From: Samuel Butler, Alps & Sanctuaries of Piedmont and the Canton Ticino (London: Alan Sutton, 1986), p. 81. Fig. 5. “M/Y Stella Polaris, 1929.” Originally: Frontispiece illustration from the first edition of Labels. From: Evelyn Waugh, Waugh Abroad: Collected Travel Writing (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2003), p. 2. Fig. 6 “The Writer, at Takutu River.” Originally: Frontispiece photograph from the first edition of Ninety-Two Days. From: Evelyn Waugh, Waugh Abroad: Collected Travel Writing (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2003), p. 368.

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