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Time and Antiquity in American EmpireRoma Redux$
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Mark Storey

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780198871507

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2021

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198871507.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 27 July 2021

Among the Ruins

Among the Ruins

Travel Narratives

Chapter:
(p.164) { 4 } Among the Ruins
Source:
Time and Antiquity in American Empire
Author(s):

Mark Storey

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198871507.003.0005

From the ancient past of Chapter 3, this chapter moves to the account of contemporary American travelers through the ruins and remnants of the ancient Roman world. Starting with Jhumpa Lahiri’s period living in Rome, and touching also on Thomas Jefferson’s account of antique ruins over two hundred years before, the chapter uses the potent image of the “ruin”—both as noun and as verb—to read American travelers in Europe as observers of empire’s recursive temporalities. Closer examinations of travel writing by William Dean Howells, Mark Twain, Eleanor Clark, and Margaret Fuller reveal the ways in which the contemporary moment for each of these writers ends up filtered through the liberal observing subject via their confrontation with the materiality of an ancient empire, collectively registering the analogical history that the ruins of empire inculcate within the landscape.

Keywords:   Rome, travel writing, Cold War, Thomas Jefferson, Jhumpa Lahiri, William Dean Howells, Mark Twain, Eleanor Clark, Margaret Fuller

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