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Global West, American frontier : travel, empire, and exceptionalism from manifest destiny to the Great Depression / David M. Wrobel

Catalog Data

Wrobel, David M.  Search this
Physical description:
xv, 312 pages : illustrations, portraits, facsimiles ; 24 cm
West (U.S.)
Exceptionalism and globalism: revisiting the traveler -- The world in the West, the West in the world: travels in the age of empire -- "No, adventure is not dead": frontier journeys in the last great age of exploration -- The end of the West?: automotive frontiers of the early twentieth century -- Rediscovering the West: regional guides in the depression years -- Enduring roads
"This thoughtful examination of a century of travel writing about the American West overturns a variety of popular and academic stereotypes. Looking at both European and American travelers' accounts of the West, from de Tocqueville's Democracy in America to William Least Heat-Moon's Blue Highways, David Wrobel offers a counternarrative to the nation's romantic entanglement with its western past and suggests the importance of some long-overlooked authors, lively and perceptive witnesses to our history who deserve new attention.Prior to the professionalization of academic disciplines, travel writers found a wide and respectful audience for their reports on history, geography, and the natural world, in addition to reporting on aboriginal cultures before there was such a discipline as anthropology. In recent decades travel writers have not received much respect in the academy, but Wrobel rescues this lively genre, demonstrating that travel writers offered an understanding of the West considerably more complex than the notion of the mythic West promoted to support Manifest Destiny in the nineteenth century and American exceptionalism in the twentieth"-- Provided by publisher.
"This book examines how travel writers viewed the American West from the age of Manifest Destiny through the Great Depression. In the nineteenth century, the West was often presented as one developing frontier among many; in the twentieth century, travel writers often searched for American frontier distinctiveness"--Provided by publisher"-- Provided by publisher.
Travel writing--Historiography  Search this
Description and travel  Search this
Historiography  Search this
Public opinion  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries