Welcome to the course guide for HIS 190: Travel Writing and History. On this guide you will find everything you need to start your research for your final paper. The guide is divided into a few different sections:
This research seminar examines the literary roots of historiography by investigating travel accounts and their major influence in shaping historiography, from Marco Polo to colonial reports to travelogues and journalism today. The course focuses on how cross-cultural encounters and exchanges shaped historiography, revolutionary writing and political philosophy in Europe and how narrative style and description still shape historical text. Travel descriptions of Europe, the New World, Persia, India, China and Africa are used as primary sources, and some have been integrated into later historical texts. These sources include texts, early maps, and photograph sand are analyzed for views oft he “other,” views of the world, post-colonial issues of representation, Orientalist discourse, and expressions of racism, sexism, imperialism and colonialism.