Cover Voyage to the Orient
series "Storica paperbacks"
pp. 390, Brossura, 978-88-15-24018-7
publication year 2012


Voyage to the Orient

Attilio Brilli's book is devoted to the history of travel in the Near East, based on the accounts of a selection of its leading characters. Through stories, literary sources, and paintings, travellers in the period stretching from the end of the 18th century to the beginning of the 20th have fed the West's imagination with images of an exotic and erotic, despotic and cruel, elusive and mysterious world, populated by harems, Turkish baths, desert caravans, and so on. But travel in the Near East was also an expression of modern humanity's yearning for the foundations of civilisation and a pilgrimage to the birthplace of monotheist religions, but also a breach and an appropriation of an inaccessible world stretching from the sands of Arabia to the Muslim holy lands, from the sultan's harem to the secret intimacy of private homes. Travel to the Near East sates the western desire for otherness through purification and sun, adventure and vocation.

Attilio Brilli teaches English and American Literature at the University of Siena (Arezzo campus).

Introduzione. L'Occidente disorientato
I. I veli dell'Oriente
II. Strategie, avventure e miraggi dei viaggiatori
III. I temi dell'orientalismo
IV. Lo sguardo dell'artista
V. L'avventura del viaggio
VI. Storie di viaggiatori
VII. Miti del paese di sabbia
VIII. Il viaggio fra ideologia e letteratura
Bibliografia essenziale
Indice dei nomi