Percy Adams skilfully portrays the emergence of the novel in the fiction of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and traces in rich detail the history of travel literature from its beginnings to the time of James Cook, contemporary of Richardson and Fielding. And since the recit de voyage and the novel were then so international, he deals throughout with all the literatures of Western Europe, one of the book's chief themes being the close literary ties among European nations.
Equally important in the present study is its demonstration that, just as early travel accounts were often a combination of reporting and fabrication, so prose fiction is not a dichotomy to be divided into the "adult" novel on the one hand and the "childish" romance on the other, but an ambivalence -- the marriage of realism and romanticism. Travel Literature and the Evolution of the Novel not only shows the novel to be amorphous and changing, it also proves impossible the task of defining the recit de voyage with its thousand forms and faces. Often the two types of literature are almost indistinguishable; even before Don Quixote, Adams writes, many travel accounts could have been advertised as having "the endless fascination of a wonderfully observed novel."
This study by Percy Adams will both modify opinions about the novel and its history and provide an excellent introduction to the travel account, a form of literature too little known to students of belles lettres.
Broad in its historical scope and interdisciplinary in its approach, the book draws on literary theory, psychoanalysis, gender criticism, and the social history of ideas. Texts analyzed include works by Boswell, Diderot, Bougainville, Cook, Stendhal, Darwin, Flaubert, Freud, D. H. Lawrence, T. E. Lawrence, Gide, Lvi-Strauss, Barthes, and V. S. Naipaul.
Originally published in 1990.
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Tales include Robert Falcon Scott's doomed Antarctic expedition of 1910-13; Robert Byron's ten-month journey through Persia to Afghanistan in the early 30s; Jack London's 1907 sailing adventure across the south Pacific; and Teddy Roosevelt's scientific exploration of the Brazilian jungle's exotic flora and fauna.
Each author and their piece of writing is introduced by editor Mark Mackenzie, who gives context to the work and provides an insightful look into how travel has changed since they were originally published.
Features extracts from:The Worst Journey in the World - Apsley Cherry-Garrard The Road to Oxiana - Robert Byron Sea and Sardinia - DH Lawrence Cruise of the Snark - Jack London American Notes - Charles Dickens Through the Brazilian Wilderness - Teddy Roosevelt Life on the Mississippi - Mark Twain Letters Written During a Short Residence in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark - Mary Wollstonecraft In Morocco - Edith Wharton Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa - David Livingstone The Histories - Herodotus South: The Story of Shackleton's Last Expedition 1914-1917 - Ernest Shackleton
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Thrown in prison for a crime he has not committed, Edmond Dantès is confined to the grim fortress of If. There he learns of a great hoard of treasure hidden on the Isle of Monte Cristo and he becomes determined not only to escape, but also to use the treasure to plot the destruction of the three men responsible for his incarceration. Dumas' epic tale of suffering and retribution, inspired by a real-life case of wrongful imprisonment, was a huge popular success when it was first serialized in the 1840s.
Translated with an Introduction by ROBIN BUSS