In this collection leading scholars in the field examine the interfaces between narratives of travel and of empire. The term `American' is used here in the hemispheric sense and `American travel writing' includes both writing about America by visitors and writings by Americans abroad. The contributors are recognized specialists in different periods of American literature and travel writing. The essays explore the ways in which descriptions of the landscapes and peoples of colonized territories shaped perceptions of these areas; the transmission images and metaphors between colony and metropole; the othering of non-scribal cultures as `primitive' or `wild'; the deployment of representations of encounters between European and other cultures in order to critique or reinforce European or American values and cultural practices; the tacit assumptions of cultural or economic hegemony underlying U.S. or European travel writing.
Professor David Seed is Professor of American Literature at the University of Liverpool. His publications include The Fictional Labyrinths of Thomas Pynchon (1988), The Fiction of Joseph Heller (1989), Rudolph Wurlitzer, American Novelist and Screenwriter (1992). Anticipations: Essays on Early Science Fiction and its Predecessors (edited collection: 1995), American Science Fiction and the Cold War (1999), Imagining Apocalypse: Studies in Cultural Crisis (edited collection: 1999), and Speaking Science Fiction (co-edited with Andy Sawyer). Professor Susan Castillo is The Harriet Beecher Stowe Professor of American Literature at King's College London. She is the co-editor of Notes from the Periphery: Marginality in North American Literature and Culture, Engendering Identities, and co-author of Native American Women in Literature and Culture. She is co-editor of the anthology The Literatures of Colonial America, with a Companion to American Colonial Literature in the works.
Notes on Contributors Introduction 1. What Are We Doing Here? Scenarios for Early English Colonies in North America (Donald Ross) 2. 'The Lies of a Distant Traveller'? The Travel Writing of Louis de Hennepin 3. French Representation of Niagra: From Hennepin to Butor (Charles Forsdick) 4. 'Come to these Arcadian Regions where there is Room for Millions': Citizen Imlay and the Empire in the West (Will Verhoeven) 5. The Conquest of Antiguity: The Travelling Empire of John Lloyd Stephens (Gesa Mackenthum) 6. 'A Confusion of Unwashed and Shabbily Dressed People': Nineteenth-Century Americans and Urban Britain (Shirley Foster) 7. Sunny Tropic Scene's: US Travel Writers in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba (Peter Hulme) 8. Henry James and the 'Swelling Act of the Imperial Theme' (Peter Rawlings) 9. The Pacifist Traveller: Kate Crane-Gartz (Tim Young) 10. American Ambassadors: Travellers in the Cold War (David Seed) 11. In the Missionary Position: Emily Prager in China (Judie Newman) Bibliography Index