thomas m wilson

Classic Travel Writing Course

March 6th, 2024

As Laurie Lee wrote of his travels before the second world war, Europe was “wide open, a place of casual frontiers, few questions and almost no travellers”. In this fortnightly course, we’ll look at a selection of classic travel tales from this older, quieter Europe.

In Tales of the Alhambra the American author and Romantic Washington Irving takes us to the Alhambra of southern Spain. In England we follow the sometimes scathing and always humorous J. B. Priestley as he travels around the country in 1933. We will finish with a visit to Greece, and read The Colossus of Maroussi, an impressionist travelogue by American writer Henry Miller first published in 1941

We will think about what motivated such writers to leave the security of home and set forth on voyages of discovery and adventure. Is the Europe these travellers and novelists portrayed different to the Europe we might encounter on a holiday today? What has changed and has it all been for the better?

11 March – Introductory Lecture on the genre of travel writing

25 March – – England in English Journey by J. B. Priestley

8 April – Southern Spain in Tales of the Alhambra by Washington Irving

22 April – – Greece in The Colossus of Maroussi by Henry Miller

The course is presented by a City of Wanneroo Libraries and the University of The Third Age (U3A).

Register Here.