English 166

Special Topics: Where the Wild Things Are: Empire and Travel Writing

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
2 Fall 2015 Saha, Poulomi
MWF 11-12 note new location: 219 Dwinelle

Other Readings and Media

Texts may include The Heart of Darkness, Around the World in 80 Days, Gulliver’s Travels, and A Small Place


This course journeys to the far-flung places where wild things roam. Our itinerary takes us through novels, travel narratives, journalism, and online sources that depict fantastical lands populated by wild beasts, "savage" peoples, and strange (or not so strange) customs. Beginning with early exploration narratives, the course considers how the genre of travel writing, in making distant sites and subjugated peoples at once alluringly dangerous and intimately familiar, has played a crucial role in the consolidation of imperial power. We then travel to the postcolonial era where once exotic colonies have become familiar sites of tourism and trade. The course will consider contemporary accounts of tourism and travel to ask how globalization has changed the contexts, styles, and forms of travel and its description. 

Other Recent Sections of This Course

Back to Semester List