Travel and Modernist Literature: Sacred and Ethical Journeys

1st Edition

Alexandra Peat

Routledge
Published April 23, 2015
Reference - 210 Pages
ISBN 9781138868847 - CAT# Y178751
Series: Routledge Studies in Twentieth-Century Literature

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Summary

Through close readings of works from Henry James to W. E. B. Du Bois, and from Virginia Woolf to Jean Rhys, this book discusses how fictional travelers negotiate and adapt various tropes of travel (such as quest, expatriation, displacement, and exile) as models for their own journeys. Specifically, Peat considers the ethical dimensions of modernist travel from two distinct vantages. The first focuses on the relationship between the secular and the sacred in modernist travel literature, arguing that the recurrent narrative of secular travel is haunted by a desire for spiritual transcendence. The second posits modernist travel fiction as a potentially positive example of transcultural relations, consciously arguing against the received notion that travel during an imperial era is always by nature itself imperialist. Throughout, particular attention is paid to the transnational nature of modernism and the various global flows traced by modernist literature.

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