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“Looking for One’s Life”

Trapped Mobilities and Adventure in Morocco

Sébastien Bachelet

This article examines how “irregular” migrants from West and Central Africa make sense of their trapped mobility in Morocco: for many, crossing into Europe has become almost impossible, returning to home countries “empty-handed” a shameful option, and staying very difficult in the face of repeated infringement of their rights. I explore the limits of contemporary depictions of a “migration crisis” that portray migrants south of the Mediterranean Sea as simply en route to Europe and fail to engage with (post)colonial entanglements. The article recalibrates the examinationof migrants’ lived experiences of stasis and mobility by exploring the emic notion of “adventure” among migrants “looking for their lives.” A focus on how migrants articulate their own (im)mobility further exposes and defies the pitfalls of abstract concepts such as “transit migration,” which is misleading in its implication of a fixed destination.

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Ambivalent Anticipations

On Soldierly Becomings in the Desert of the Real

Thomas Randrup Pedersen

What if war is not hell? What if war is not entertainment? What if war is, instead, the stuff dreams are made of? What is one then to anticipate of one’s tour of duty in a war zone? In this article, I interrogate anticipations in relation to soldierly becomings through deployment to Afghanistan. Based on ethnographic fieldwork with Danish combat troops, I explore the uneasy coexistence of two anticipatory plotlines: ‘the passion’ and ‘the desert’. The former depicts the tour of duty as a heroic adventure driven by desire for real combat, while the latter casts deployment as an anti-heroic misadventure imposed by the dull reality in theatre. I argue that anticipation can harbour ambivalent, even antagonistic, yet simultaneous expectations of what might come. I show that anticipation is further blurred, as our anticipatory horizons are tied not only to our unsettled plotlines of becoming but also to our being’s existential imperative.

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The Adventures of a Cartoon Strip Character with a Quiff and a Dog

Tintin's Journeys as an Original Form of Travel Writing

Loïc Loykie Lominé

Georges Rémi (better known as Hergé, a pseudonym made up of his two initials: R G) died in 1983, having made a name as the father of the modern cartoon strip in Western Europe, notably thanks to 23 books narrating the adventures of a betufted boy reporter called Tintin. Tintinology (literally and unambiguously: the study of Tintin) started to develop in the mid-1980s as a small-scale, possibly amusing, area of scholarship – yet one where an increasing number of academics have analysed Tintin and his stories in the light of the most serious intellectual theories, from psychoanalysis (David 1994; Peeters 1984; Tisseron 1985, 1990, 1993) to semiology (Floch 2002) via cultural studies (Masson 1989; Baetens 1990; Bonfand and Marion 1996 ; Tomasi and Deligne 1998). The critical literature on Tintin is expanding alongside the literature on Hergé himself (Tisseron 1987; Smolderen and Sterckx 1988; Ajame 1991; Assouline 1996; Serres 2000; Peeters 2002; Sadoul 2003). This article contributes to this body of Tintin meta-literature by focusing on the way Tintin travelled around the world, from China (The Blue Lotus) to Peru (Prisoners of the Sun) and from Egypt (Cigars of the Pharaoh) to the Arctic Ocean (The Shooting Star).

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Matthew W. Binney

Critics have argued that a shift toward the “inward” occurred later in eighteenthcentury travel writing in part because of earlier questions of credibility. However, John Campbell’s fictional The Travels and Adventures of Edward Brown (1739) focuses upon the “inward” by drawing upon a technique already used in novels—that is, depicting the narrator as a consciousness. Consciousness, or personal identity, derives from John Locke and appears in Campbell’s travel account to demonstrate how circumstances define the narrator’s travel experiences. These circumstances at once establish the credibility of the narrator’s descriptions and also promote Campbell’s Tory commercialism. For the first, the narrator’s consciousness offers a credible account by describing how people live in time and place; for the second, the narrator demonstrates how personal identity and political ideology were attached from the outset, promoting commerce and colonialism through the narrator’s depiction of a nation’s circumstances that produce unique customs and commodities.

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'Adventures in Auto-Eroticism'

Economies of Travelling Masculinity in Autobiographical Texts by Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady

Mary Paniccia Carden

Jack Kerouac's On the Road and Neal Cassady's The First Third & Other Writings attempt to establish a masculinity that evades the restrictions of a bourgeois-driven patriarchal culture without abandoning traditional patriarchal prerogatives of male power. Although they reject the manhood enacted in capitalist competition, their texts depend in fundamental ways on marketplace models of identity. Their economies of manhood devalue one aspect of U.S. patriarchy (capitalist success) by investing in another (self-determination). Trading on models of male identity offers returns of increased power, pleasure and fulfilment, but simultaneously puts these outcomes at risk. Cassady's pun on 'auto' the (male) self and 'auto' the car posits both as self-contained vehicles of an independent, powerful eroticism. But both men find the erotics of a masculinized travel imbricated in a dangerously fluid economy of gained and lost signifiers of manhood.

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The Adventures of William Hood

Fictions of Shakespeare the Deer Stealer

Paul Franssen

In fiction as in biography, Shakespeare's life is often politicised. Originally, the story of young Shakespeare caught poaching deer and forced to flee Stratford served to illustrate the role of fate in the creation of genius, while his irresponsible behaviour was downplayed. Later, the poaching was represented as rebellion against aristocratic privileges, and even as a deliberate political protest against enclosures of arable land. In more recent fiction, Shakespeare needs to be forced into a social awareness by the deer stealing episode, or even becomes a heartless landlord himself. Thus, Shakespeare's fictional lives reflect political developments in society, from class conflict to cultural levelling.

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The Adventures of Miss Ross

Interventions into, and the Tenacity of, Romantic Travel Writing in Southwest Persia

Barbara Cooke

This article concerns the written life of Dr Elizabeth Ness Macbean Ross (1878–1915). Ross's posthumously published memoir about this time, A Lady Doctor in Bakhtiari Land (1921), challenges the masculine, monomythic stance of her travel-writing forebears Sir Henry Layard and Sir Richard Burton and anticipates contemporary texts in which the encounter between “traveling“ self and “native” other destabilizes, rather than reaffirms, the traveler's sense of identity and authority. The article also briefly examines a set of stories the Times ran on Dr Ross, which attempted to appropriate her for a dominant narrative of the Middle East reliant on a languid orientalism, on the one hand, and tales of derring-do, on the other; a narrative which persists to the present day, and which the forgotten A Lady Doctor in Bakhtiari Land works hard to resist.

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Kristine Alexander

Miriam Forman-Brunell. 2009. Babysitter: An American History. New York: New York University Press.

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Deborah Evans

This article is intended as ‘sequel’ to Adrian van den Hoven’s article in Sartre Studies International (vol. 6 no. 2 , 2000) entitled ‘Some Of These Days’. I would like to examine the significance of the jazz tune ‘Some Of These Days’ for Sartre, both from an autobiographical and from a philosophical point of view, referring in detail to the text of La Nausée.

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Romy Pocztaruk

A última aventura reveals the approximately one-month journey that I undertook on the Transamazonic Road on October 2011. Traveling by car along sections of the almost four thousand kilometers of this highway that runs east-west across the northern part of Brazil, I searched for material and symbolic evidence remaining from a pharaonic, utopic, boastful project that had quickly faded into oblivion and abandonment. The outcomes of my travels are static images of empty, unpopulated scenes, where absent dwellers keep the vestiges of grand fantasies.