As an explicitly transcultural genre premised on encounter and exchange, travel writing provides ample opportunities for the study of cultural transfer across the centuries. As diverse as the forms and purposes of travel writing are – covering reports of exploratory journeys, scientific expeditions, pilgrimages, educational tours, or leisure trips – they all involve the acquisition, processing and mediation of cultural knowledge. However, contemporary studies in the fields of intercultural transfer and exchange (Lüsebrink 2005, Greenblatt 2010) have pointed out the instability and contingency of any cultural transaction. In addition, discursive constructions of the self and the other are shaped by particular ideological, aesthetic, gendered, social and institutional contexts (Leerssen et al. 2007).
This fourth U4 Workshop in Cultural Transfer Research will explore how the genre of travel writing has shaped our understanding of cultural transfer, and how cultural transfer has been imagined in accordance with generic aspects of travel writing and its actors. In accordance with an author-centred approach we will explore the performative, rhetorical and representational strategies in travel writing. In addition, we will look at other actors involved – cultural transmitters such as translators and publishers, as well as the public / readers – in order to understand the complex dynamics of cultural transfer in the genre. In particular, we invite papers that address
travel writing and cultural transfer in regard to the following:
- introducing good practice case examples
- discussing regularly encountered challenges
- presenting research data related to elements of the international classroom
- knowledge production
- literary market
- publication formats (scribal publication, journals, books)
- identity construction (the self vs the other)
Organisers: Dr. Petra Broomans, University of Groningen and Prof. Dr. Barbara Schaff, University of Göttingen.