CFP: Green Travel: Texts, Traditions, Tensions (UK) (1/5/07; 3/23/07-3/24/07)

full name / name of organization: 
Thompson, Carl
contact email: 
carl.thompson@ntu.ac.uk

Green Travel: Texts, Traditions, Tensions

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An Interdisciplinary Colloquium

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23rd-24th March, 2007

St John's College, Oxford

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Modern environmentalism and the literary genre of travel writing have a
close but complex relationship. In their most characteristic
contemporary forms, both have their origins in Romantic ideas and
practices, being intricately bound up with the critique and/or rejection
of modernity that Romanticism initiates. Travel writing has long been a
medium that does much to express, and to encourage, many strands of what
we would now label 'eco-consciousness' - notably a profound respect for
place and locality, for nature in its 'unspoiled' aspects, and for
traditional or indigenous practices and philosophies. It is a medium,
equally, in which one often finds powerful accounts of ecological
devastation, of vanished or vanishing species, habitats and cultures. At
the same time, however, the overall influence of travel writing as a
genre is perhaps more problematic for the environmentally-minded critic.
In many of its most popular, and most marketable, forms, it arguably
encourages in Western travellers fantasies of discovery and exploration,
or of restorative encounters with 'Nature' in some pristine form. In the
process, it often obscures ecological realities, whilst simultaneously
fuelling a wanderlust that can contribute significantly to
environmentally damaging practices (flying long-haul, for example).

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To celebrate its 5th year (and to celebrate also the 10th anniversary of
the Centre for Travel Writing Studies at Nottingham Trent University),
the Writing Journeys and Places colloquium invites papers that consider
the theme of green travel from any disciplinary angle. Questions that
might be addressed include (but are not limited to):

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* Who are the travel writers who do most to promote environmental
consciousness?
* Is it possible to perceive different traditions of green travel
writing, either across different cultures and time periods or within a
culture and/or period?
* By what means do writers construct themselves rhetorically as
green travellers, and what are the characteristic tropes and topoi of
environmentally-minded travel writing?

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Participants coming from sociological and anthropological backgrounds
might also like to consider:

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* the practices by which the figure of the green traveller is
constructed and defined;
* the relationship of such practices to other forms of travel and
tourism;
* and the extent to which notions of green travel have either
genuinely changed the larger tourist industry, or else been co-opted by
it.

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As always, we would like the emphasis to fall for the most part on the
writing of travel experiences and travel personae, although papers need
not be limited to this topic. We would also welcome papers that address
green traditions, and environmentalist tropes and conventions, in other
media such as photography, art, film and television.

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For more information, or to offer a paper, contact
Carl.Thompson_at_ntu.ac.uk. The deadline for paper proposals is 5th January
2007.

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Costs: TBC.

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Received on Fri Oct 06 2006 - 15:58:35 EDT

cfp categories: 
international_conferences