Textual Analysis and Textual Theory

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Textual Analysis and Textual Theory. Session Eight Søren Hattesen Balle English Department of Culture and Identity. Agenda. Introduction : the summary assignment for today and next time Introduction : today’s session Presentation : fiction and non-fiction travel writing - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Textual Analysis and Textual TheorySession Eight

Sren Hattesen BalleEnglishDepartment of Culture and IdentityAgendaIntroduction: the summary assignment for today and next timeIntroduction: todays sessionPresentation: fiction and non-fictiontravel writingRomantic and Victorian travelClass room discussion: Robert Louis Stevenson, Travels with a Donkey in the Cevenne (1879)travel writing and the thematic function of comic anomaly, displaced romance, and allegoryFiction, non-fiction, and the literary mindFictional and non-fictional contracts: Virginia Woolf, Orlando: A Biography and William J. ClintonThe literary mind

Travel and Travel WritingWhy travel?Why write or make tv programmes about travel?Why read about travel?Why watch travel programmeshttp://palinstravels.co.uk/index.phpTravel writing: the key aspects according to FusselFictionComic novelRomanceQuestPastoralPicaresqueAllegory

Non-fiction:EssayMemoirAutobiography

Elements of non-fiction in travel writingEssay: moral purposeMemoir: encounters with great men / important eventsAutobiographyElements of fiction in travel writingComic novelComic anomalies: normal vs weirdElements of fiction in travel writingRomanceQuest: tripartite structure (home-away-home)Elements of fiction in travel writingRomancePastoral:Contrasts between an observer and the observed:Rich complex sophisticated - city morally inferiorPoor simple - country morally superiorPastoral elegyLament of loss, change, or death

Elements of fiction in travel writingRomanceQuest: tripartite structure (home-away-home)Pastoral (elegy):Contrasts between an observer and the observed:Rich complex sophisticated - city morally inferiorPoor simple - country morally superiorPicaresque: Real vs ideal. Deflation

Elements of fiction in travel writingAllegory: primary and secondary orders of significationTravelling = living and dying (life is a journey)Travelling = reading and writing (what is suggested about the activities of reading and writing?)Elements of fiction in travel writingAllegoryTravelling = reading and writingTraveller = reader or writerUnknown = the text

Travel writing as displaced romanceAll this is to suggest that the modern travel book is what Northrop Frye would call a myth that has been displaced that is, lowered brought down to earth, rendered credible scientifically [] (Fussell 1980: 208)Romantic and Victorian travelTourists, travellers, and artRuinsLandscapesThe beautiful: Culture, art: pleasureThe picturesque: mediation between the beautiful and the sublimeThe sublime: Nature: awe, horror, fear

Caspar David Friedrich (1774-1840), Wanderer above the Sea of Fog (1818)

Anon. The Lonely Wanderer (Photo) www.travelblog.org/Photos/1816850.html

J.M.W. Turner, Tintern Abbey (1794)

Dr. Syntax

Intertextuality Stevensons dedicationIntertextuality and allegoryJohn Bunyan, The Pilgrims Progress (1678)R. L. Stevenson, Travels with a Donkey in the Cevenne (1879)

Outline the uses of fictional elements:Comic novel (Does Stevenson use comic anomalies? How and Why?)Romance (how and why are the romance elements used?)QuestPastoralPicaresqueAllegory (Of reading? Of writing? Of life?)

Outline the uses of non-fictional elementsEssay (is Stevenson making a moral point?)Memoir: Do we learn something about famous people and places?Autobiography: Do we learn something about Stevensons life

R. L. Stevenson, Travels with a Donkey in the Cevenne (1879), p. 8My Dear Sidney Colvin,The journey which this little book is to describe was very agreeable and fortunate for me. After an uncouth beginning, I had the best of luck to the end. But we are all travellers in what John Bunyan calls the wilderness of this worldall, too, travellers with a donkey: and the best that we find in our travels is an honest friend. He is a fortunate voyager who finds many. We travel, indeed, to find them. They are the end and the reward of life. They keep us worthy of ourselves; and when we are alone, we are only nearer to the absent.Every book is, in an intimate sense, a circular letter to the friends of him who writes it. They alone take his meaning; they find private messages, assurances of love, and expressions of gratitude, dropped for them in every corner. The public is but a generous patron who defrays the postage. Yet though the letter is directed to all, we have an old and kindly custom of addressing it on the outside to one. Of what shall a man be proud, if he is not proud of his friends? And so, my dear Sidney Colvin, it is with pride that I sign myself affectionately yours,R. L. S.

R. L. Stevenson, Travels with a Donkey in the Cevenne (1879)