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Organization, Regulations, and Courses 2017-18

MALS 281 The Art of Travel Writing

This course is aimed at those with a special interest in travel writing, a subgenre of literary nonfiction broadly described as narratives of encounters with unfamiliar places and peoples, with an emphasis on the highly subjective nature of the experience. The focus will be on the construction of a narrative, the role of the narrator, and the development of themes. We will consider narrative voice, the physical and cultural territory, and the meaning of the journey. To what extent is travel writing descriptive, and to what extent inventive? How do the author’s own needs and assumptions affect the record of his or her journey? What is the relationship between the viewer and the viewed? How is the narrative both a window and a mirror? Writing experience is preferred, but is not a prerequisite. Class time will be devoted to both student and published work. Authors to be read will include Freya Stark, Robert Byron, Edith Wharton, and D.H. Lawrence.


Barbara Kreiger