Catalogue


Travel writing and the natural world, 1768-1840 [electronic resource] /
Paul Smethurst.
imprint
Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire ; New York, NY : Palgrave Macmillan, 2012.
description
x, 243 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
ISBN
9781137030351
format(s)
Book
More Details
imprint
Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire ; New York, NY : Palgrave Macmillan, 2012.
isbn
9781137030351
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
catalogue key
12031452
 
Includes bibliographical references (pages 226-234) and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Paul Smethurst is Associate Professor at the University of Hong Kong, where he teaches courses in travel writing, fictions of globalisation and literature and the environment. As well as publications on postmodernism and contemporary fiction, he has published widely on travel writing, and is presently completing a book on the cultural history of the bicycle.
Reviews
Review Quotes
'Paul Smethurst's study of the conceptualisations of 'nature' in the heyday of scientific and Romantic explorations of the natural world is ambitious, shrewd and illuminating; and there's a stirring urgency in his own quest as he travels the intellectual territory - a tour de force, if he'll forgive the pun.' - Professor Malcolm Andrew, University of Kent, UK
'Paul Smethurst's study of the conceptualisations of 'nature' in the heyday of scientific and Romantic explorations of the natural world is ambitious, shrewd and illuminating; and there's a stirring urgency in his own quest as he travels the intellectual territory - a tour de force, if he'll forgive the pun.' - Professor Malcolm Andrews, University of Kent, UK
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Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
Taking as a starting point the parallel occurrence of Cook's Pacific voyages, the development of natural history, scenic tourism in Britain, and romantic travel in Europe, this book argues that the effect of these practices was the production of nature as an abstract space and that the genre of travel writing had a central role in reproducing it.
Description for Bookstore
This book explores the heyday of global exploration, scenic tourism and romantic travel through the genre which was to define relations with nature until the present day
Long Description
While there is increasing anxiety about the natural world and many are calling for action on the environment, academic discourse on the subject has been dominated by romantic ideas of wilderness, new primitivisms, and philosophical approaches to the concept of nature. This book explores the heyday of travel writing about the natural world between 1768 and 1840. The starting point is the parallel occurrence of Cook's Pacific voyages, natural history, scenic tourism and romantic travel. The lasting effect of these practices has been to turn nature into a detached and abstract space and travel writing had a central role in this process.Unifying a wide field of enquiry is the argument that travel writing, whether presenting scientific information or aesthetic responses to landscape, shares a common interest in finding order and structure in nature. Even where political imperatives are not explicit, a tendency towards imperial order is found; empire is writ large and small. As little resistance to the idea of order is found, we can conclude that, through nature, travel writing in the eighteenth century was generally supportive of empire, trade and the landowning class.
Main Description
While there is increasing anxiety about the natural world and many are calling for action on the environment, academic discourse on the subject has been dominated by romantic ideas of wilderness, new primitivisms, and philosophical approaches to the concept of nature. This book explores the heyday of travel writing about the natural world between 1768 and 1840. The starting point is the parallel occurrence of Cook's Pacific voyages, natural history, scenic tourism and romantic travel. The lasting effect of these practices has been to turn nature into a detached and abstract space and travel writing had a central role in this process. Unifying a wide field of enquiry is the argument that travel writing, whether presenting scientific information or aesthetic responses to landscape, shares a common interest in finding order and structure in nature. Even where political imperatives are not explicit, a tendency towards imperial order is found; empire is writ large and small. As little resistance to the idea of order is found, we can conclude that, through nature, travel writing in the eighteenth century was generally supportive of empire, trade and the landowning class.
Table of Contents
List of Illustrationsp. viii
Acknowledgementsp. ix
Introductionp. 1
The Scientific Gaze and Museum Orderp. 16
Natural History in the Contact Zonep. 43
Natural Order: Metaphor and Structurep. 68
Romantic Technique and Humboldtian Visionp. 88
Landscape and Nation-Buildingp. 109
The English Picturesque as Social Orderp. 128
Natural Sublime and Feminine Sublimep. 153
Prescribing Nature: William Wordsworth's Guide Through the Lakesp. 171
Textual Landscapes and Disappearing Naturep. 181
Conclusion and Codap. 196
Notesp. 205
Bibliographyp. 226
Indexp. 235
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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