This study offers the first book-length exploration of travel narratives by nineteenth-century Spanish authors. Focusing on texts produced during a crucial period in the development of Spain's modern consciousness at the close of its imperial age, "Scripted Geographies" shows how writers' strategies of travel representation reflected and participated in this process of cultural transformation. The first two chapters, devoted to travel within Europe, explore constructions of Spain's sometimes problematic encounter with Western society and traditions. The final chapters shift to orientalist travel, allowing reflection on how Spanish renderings of the non-Western "other" intersect with patterns found in the better-known corpus of orientalist literature produced in then-ascendant imperial powers like Britain and France. These textual constructions of cultural difference reflect at a profound level their authors' preoccupations and hopes for Spain, as well as their strong awareness of both the powers and dangers inherent in the process of representing "real world" experience via language.
Gayle Nunley is Chair of the Department of Romance Languages and Associate Professor of Spanish at the University of Vermont.
Publisher: Associated University Presses