Women Travel Writers: Questioning the Value of the "Interior Journey"

Dr Maureen Elizabeth Mulligan
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Women travel writers in the Colonial period, such as Mary Kingsley, Freya Stark or Rebecca West, travelled and wrote in order to inform the domestic readership about life in other countries. Recent trends in post-colonial women's travel writing, such as work by Mary Morris, Sara Wheeler and Robyn Davidson, concentrates more on the "interior journey" of the individual traveller, and the importance of the country visited is drastically reduced in the travel narrative. This paper questions whether such a tendency is actually an improvement in the genre, or caters more to a facet of popular feminism that rationalises a focus on the personal at the cost of more political writing.

Keywords: Travel writing, women, feminism, post-colonialism
Stream: Literature, Literary Studies
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Women Travel Writers

Dr Maureen Elizabeth Mulligan

Lecturer, Department of Modern Philology, ULPGC

Degree in English from New Hall, Cambridge University, and PGCE from Goldsmiths College, London University. Taught in Nottingham, the Seychelles, Sweden and Spain. Worked with the British Council in the Canary Islands, and has taught in the ULPGC for over ten years, teaching Literature, Language and English for Translation. Travelled widely and published on a variety of subjects, mainly to do with travel writing by women.

Ref: H05P0818