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The Grand Tour at a Crossroads?

Sarah Betzer
University of Virginia

Douglas Fordham
University of Virginia

In the past decade, the Grand Tour has emerged as a productive site for innovative methodological and theoretical work in art history, as well as a crossroads where art history has intersected literary studies, archaeology, history, and aesthetics. In this sense, the 'intersections' of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century travellers, antiquarians, and collectors has found a mirror in the interdisciplinary approaches which have defined the work of twentieth- and twenty-first century scholars.

This session aims to take the measure of the Grand Tour in the context of newly developing models for theorising transnational and imperial contact, and in light of an expanding critical literature which considers how national and gender identities might be seen to take form in relation to the spaces, experiences, and objects encountered through travel. While we invite papers that examine the Grand Tour in its broadest definition, we particularly welcome contributions which engage the eighteenth-century phenomenon and its nineteenth-century afterlives, and which draw upon innovative methodological and theoretical models.