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The Rise of Oriental Travel: English Visitors to the Ottoman Empire, 1580 -  1720 (Hardback)
  • The Rise of Oriental Travel: English Visitors to the Ottoman Empire, 1580 -  1720 (Hardback)
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The Rise of Oriental Travel: English Visitors to the Ottoman Empire, 1580 - 1720 (Hardback)

(author)
£89.99
Hardback 291 Pages / Published: 31/03/2004
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This book follows four Seventeenth-century Englishmen on their journeys around the Ottoman Empire while the British were, for the first time in history, becoming important players in the Mediterranean. This book shows that hostility between East and West is neither historical nor inevitable, but rather the result of selective memory.

Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
ISBN: 9780333973646
Number of pages: 291
Weight: 631 g
Dimensions: 235 x 155 x 22 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

'Elegantly written, and supported by Gerald MacLean's extensive archival research and travels in the Middle East and North Africa, The Rise of Oriental Travel shows the appeal which early modern Ottoman Islam held for English society. MacLean combines historical evidence with careful reading, and demonstrates how much the Mediterranean Islamic world was open to European Christians at a time when religious and racial prejudices in Christendom militated against Muslims realizing the self-knowledge, adventure and wealth of the four Englishmen in this book.' - Nabil I. Matar, Professor of English, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, Florida, USA

'Eight decades, four travellers, and two cultures in one book: Gerald MacLean tells the compelling story of fascinating encounters between English travellers and the Ottoman empire from the 1580's to the 1720's. A panoply of characters, attitudes, and experiences parades before our eyes...MacLean's scintillating interpretation of these travel narratives is the next best thing to time travel. We see through MacLean's skillful exposition the cultural exoticism represented by the Orient alongside a political critique of the incipient 'Orientalism' of these early accounts, making us realize that the Seventeenth-century represents an earlier phase of the West's longstanding obsession with the threat of political Islam.' - Srinivas Aravamudan, Author of Tropicopolitans: Colonialism and Agency, 1688-1804, Duke University, USA

'A stunning achievement. MacLean has captured the experience of English travellers discovering for themselves that Islam was not ungodly, that Turks were not terrible, and that Christians and Muslims had no need for conflict. The best sort of travel book: History, politics, travel's pleasures and pains come vividly alive.' - Professor Ali Tablit, University of Algiers, Algeria

'By giving us a more complicated picture of England's encounters with the Islamic Mediterranean, MacLean challenges and questions a monolithic picture of the Eurocentricism of Renaissance culture. This stimulating book will be welcomed by historians, literary scholars, and anyone interested in the history of travel writing.' - David Loewenstein, Marjorie and Lorin Tiefenthaler Professor of English, University of Wisconsin, Madison, USA

Reviews of the hardback edition

'...an unusually detailed and well-placed account of some fascinating cross-cultural encounters in the period between Shakespeare and Milton...MacLean's approach is refreshingly direct; he treats his four authors not as pawns on a chessboard of theory, but as human beings whose characters and experiences are of intrinsic interest...this is a fascinating and stimulating book, written with enthusiasm, skill, and an appealing sense of human sympathy.' - Noel Malcolm, Sunday Telegraph

'The Rise of Oriental Travel is a beautifully written monograph on the attitudes which sixteenth - and seventeenth - century Westerners revealed as they explored the Ottoman Empire.' - Times Literary Supplement

'...a lively and enjoyable book.' - Kostas Yiavis, Selwyn College, Cambridge, UK

'Fascinatingly detailed, gorgeously illustrated, with copius notes, it evidences the author's enthusiasm to retrace the itineraries of a handful of travellers who, more often than not, acted as agents of a rising empire, witnessing the workings of a great one during a decisive period of early colonial British expansion.' - Studies in Travel Writing, Pere Gifra-Adroher

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