Professor Andrea Kaston Tange is chairing the permanent session on travel writing at the MMLA conference (this year to be held in Milwaukee, Nov 7-10; conference theme Art & Artifice). She would love to encourage the submission of 19th c. papers to the panel: "The Arts of Travel."
One might consider traveling well to be an art in and of itself. While there is a lot of logistical planning, organizational skill, and practical preparation that must go into a trip, the art of traveling well--one might argue--is the ability to adapt, even to thrive, when the planning fails. This panel invites papers that consider traveling from perspectives that move beyond the merely practical. Does the art of traveling vary by location? By time period? By cultural perspective? What kinds of arts and artifacts are encountered by travelers, and what qualities are necessary to appreciate them? Is it possible to understand "foreign" arts as a traveler, or must one remain forever distanced from art objects that are produced by a culture that is not one's own? What might be the definition of an "artificial" traveler or an "artificial" destination or an "artificial" artwork? What are the implications of seeing a replica in a museum, for example, instead of the "real thing"? Why do so many people consider it an artificial or inauthentic experience to go on a packaged tour, but not so if they strike out on their own with a guidebook and itinerary? This panel welcomes papers on any time period and any travel destination, so long as they frame the process or product of travel through the lens of art and/or artifice.
Inquiries and proposals should be directed to Professor Andrea Kaston Tange <firstname.lastname@example.org>. Please send 500-word proposals by May 31, 2013. (Please indicate your name, institutional affiliation, and rank somewhere on the proposal or in your email.)