The conference will take place via Zoom.
John Urry’s seminal work, The Tourist Gaze (1990), initiated a “cultural turn” in travel studies, leading to an exploration of how tourism generates discourse, and how representation becomes part of the social and cultural landscapes travellers cross, transforming them. Using the European context as a reference, Urry identified 1840 and the diffusion of mass tourism as a turning point, and discussed tourism as one crucial characteristic of the modern experience.
A rich literature has since explored these themes, in relation to the geopolitics of a globalizing world. In this conference, we aim to investigate the transformative nature of travel, as a form of temporary separation from the everyday – motivated by recreational, educational, religious, or diplomatic reasons – focusing on the period from the beginning of the eighteenth century to the earliest decades of the nineteenth century. This period, which has received less scholarly attention, merits further investigation, in light of the interconnections of travel with national formation processes, with modernization, as well as with the geopolitics of colonialism. We also aim to explore travel and transformation in relation to different geographic contexts.
Was travel (domestic or international) an experience only available to the elites before the mid-nineteenth century? Were there forms of tourism, or even mass tourism? What was the role played by travel-related media (cartography, art, literature) in advertising, representing and imagining travel? How did travel and travel-related media affect social, cultural, political and economic change, and relations between countries?
We invite 350-words abstracts for 15-minutes presentations, followed by 15 minutes of Q&A and discussion. We particularly welcome contributions working on primary sources, on representations of travel and their materiality, in any context.
Contributions might address topics such as (but not limited to):
- Travel and social/cultural identity
- Travel and social change/mobility
- Travel and nationality
- The geopolitics of travel and hospitality
- Travel, economic structures and modernization
- The materiality of travel-related media, how it relates to their visual and textual narratives and how it impacts their diffusion
- The readership and commercial impact of travel-related media
- Travel and pilgrimage
Confirmed keynote speaker: Professor Laura Nenzi (The University of Tennessee, Knoxville).
The language of the conference will be English.
Guidelines for Submission:
Abstracts should be submitted via email to firstname.lastname@example.org by March 19, 2021. A single PDF document should be attached to the email, with the following information:
- Full Name of the Applicant
- Affiliation and Contact Details
- Title of Presentation
- Presentation Abstract (maximum 350 words)
Notification of acceptance will be sent out by the end of April 2021. Please send any queries to email@example.com.
The conference is part of the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions Project Travel in Tokugawa Period Japan (1603-1868): Identity, Nation and Social Transformation led by Dr. Sonia Favi (2019-2021). The project, funded by the European Commission (Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme), investigates the social and cultural history of Tokugawa Japan (1603-1868) through maps from the John Rylands Library Japanese Collection (https://www.library.manchester.ac.uk/search-resources/special-collections/guide-to-special-collections/a-to-z/collection/?match=Japanese+Collection)