Travel, Exile and Displacement - CP594

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2017-18 2018-19
(version 2)
Autumn and Spring
View Timetable
6 30 (15) DR MHT Awadalla







This module explores the notions of exile, travel, migration, and displacement by focusing on an international corpus of nineteenth- and twentieth-century texts that concern the transnational movement of European and non-European writers across the globe. Migratory trajectories will be studied in relation to the specific historical and cultural contexts out of which the texts originated and that concern complex issues of race, identity, gender, and imperial history. Writers examined include Gustave Flaubert, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, D.H. Lawrence, Joseph Conrad, Marguerite Duras, Henri Michaux, Roberto Bolaño, Jack Kerouac, Gao Xingjian, and Ernesto 'Che' Guevara. The course aims to provide students with an international and comparative methodology for studying the phenomenon of travel, migration, and exile. Students will also be equipped with a critical framework that will allow them to interrogate and problematise Eurocentric and exoticizing perspectives of Asian, African, and Latin American countries, particularly what the critics Mary Louise Pratt and Edward Said have theorised as ‘imperial eyes’ and ‘Orientalism’ respectively.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

The module will be taught by means of a two-hour seminar for 20 weeks

Method of assessment

100% coursework

Preliminary reading

Indicative list, current at time of publication. Reading lists will be published annually
Specific editions are not prescribed for the texts listed below as the issue of different translations will be addressed as part of the module:
Roberto Bolaño, The Savage Detectives
Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness
Marguerite Duras, Hiroshima Mon Amour
Gustave Flaubert, Flaubert in Egypt (extracts)
Ernesto 'Che' Guevara, The Motorcycle Diaries
Jack Kerouac, On the Road
D. H. Lawrence, Mornings in Mexico (extracts) and 'The Woman Who Rode Away'
Henri Michaux, A Barbarian in Asia

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
8.1 To demonstrate systematic understanding of key critical issues involved in travel, exile and displacement, and its literary narration;
8.2 To demonstrate a conceptual understanding of a wide range of travel and migratory narratives from four different continents (Europe, Asia, Africa, and South America;
8.3 To discuss and assess the aesthetic and ideological aspects of travel literature, displaying the ability to make cogent literary-critical judgments based on rigorous textual analysis, and an awareness of the critical scholarship on the subject;
8.4 To evaluate critically and cogently the ways in which narratives of travel, exile, and migration transcend fixed categories of genre, and to devise and sustain arguments based upon judgments about literary genres in general;
8.5 To interrogate and problematize Eurocentric and exoticizing perspectives of Asian, African, and Latin America countries, particularly what the critics Mary Louise Pratt and Edward Said have theorised as 'imperial eyes' and ‘Orientalism’ respectively.

University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that module information is accurate for the relevant academic session and to provide educational services as described. However, courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Please read our full disclaimer.