Gender, Curiosity, and the Grand Tour
Number of pages
SourceJourneys, 21, 2, (2020), pp. 1-23
Article / Letter to editor
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Literatuurwetenschap en Cultuurwetenschap
SubjectEurope in a Changing World; Tourism, Travel and Text
Discussions of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century European travel have long tended to over-apply the model of the grand tour. It is increasingly recognized now that many British journeys to the Continent knew different motivations and itineraries, and were made from different subject positions than that of the young male aristocrat. An alternative model proposed for female travelers has its own limitations, however. It presents women as more open-minded than men, with a greater eye for detail and keen to escape patriarchal confinement at home. Yet female travelers’ wish and capacity to offer an alternative to the grand-tourist gaze was limited. Still, travel, travel writing, and publishing offered women a chance to explore new social models and lifestyles and develop new forms of personal independence.
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