The Theme of Departure in Women's Travel Narratives, 1600-1900: Taking Leave from Oneself

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Takes a comparative approach to women's travel writing from three centuries, in English, French, Polish, and Russian. It focuses on narrative strategies used by female travel writers. Female travel writing before the twentieth century shows parallels and continuities in its use of the theme of departure into a different sphere or convention. From travel into a utopian world where women rule and inhabitants live in harmony, to travel into the private world of subjectivity and poetic inspiration, female heroines venture outside the realities that bind them.


“Makowiecka's scholarly contribution in reclaiming works of women writers unjustly condemned to obscurity is enormous; her unique capacity to draw comparisons across a variety of historical and national traditions makes this study truly synoptic and comprehensive. The topic of women's traveler narratives is exceedingly timely and has received considerable critical attention in the last two decades. This book is unique in its comparative approach and in the unusual texts included.” - Dr. Amy Mandelkar, Associate Professor, City University of New York Graduate Center

“Dr. Makowiecka examines the social context of these writings: the masculinist literary world that excludes women writers, and the resultant negotiations these authors must undergo in order to make a literary space for themselves – travel writing, with its fuzzy generic boundaries, offers a particularly productive area for women who wish to make a name for themselves.” - Dr. Sally O’Driscoll, Associate Professor, Fairfield University

"...particularly interesting." - SciTech Book News

Table of Contents

Introduction - Points of Departure
1 Departing from the Familiar: Writing the Self into the New World in Seventeenth-Century England
2 Transcultural Departures and Coming to Writing in Eighteenth-Century Women’s Writing
3 A Matter of Fact Departure: Stepping out of His Footprints
4 The Eve of Departure: Maiden Voyages
5 Conclusions on Genre, Gender and Textual Departures

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