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Travelling in Different SkinsGender Identity in European Women's Oriental Travelogues, 1850-1950$
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Dúnlaith Bird

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199644162

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199644162.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 18 November 2019

A Woman’s Place

A Woman’s Place

Spatial Dynamics of the Orient

Chapter:
(p.200) 8 A Woman’s Place
Source:
Travelling in Different Skins
Author(s):

Dúnlaith Bird

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199644162.003.0008

Chapter 8 This chapter discusses the complex strategies, from transposition of the home space to aesthetic discourse, used by women travel writers to access the Oriental space while avoiding censure. It begins with Isabella Bird’s depiction of ‘embryonic’ spaces in the American Wild West, precursors to the unbeaten tracks she pursues in her Oriental travelogues. It then analyses the overlaying of exotic with domestic space in the work of both Bird and Gertrude Bell. The second section examines how constructions of the female and native body disrupt the textual formulation of the Orient, from Bird’s feminisation of the Korean landscape, painting rather than planting her flag of conquest, to Isabelle Eberhardt’s conflation of the female body and colonial space in Algeria. The final section considers the lure of the desert, its opposition to the topos of the harem, and the potential it offers for a textual ‘third space’.

Keywords:   feminist geography, Edward Said, Third Space, Gertrude Bell, domestic space, harem, desert, Orientalism, Isabella Bird, cartography, exploration

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