Read Maiden Voyages: Writings of Women Travelers by Mary Morris Online


This is a collection of women's travel writings, including work by Joan Didion, Edith Wharton, Mildred Cable, Willa Cather, Isak Dinesen, and others. In wry, lyrical, and sometimes wistful voices, they write of disguising themselves as men for safety, of longing for family left behind or falling in love with people met along the way, and of places as diverse as icy HimalayThis is a collection of women's travel writings, including work by Joan Didion, Edith Wharton, Mildred Cable, Willa Cather, Isak Dinesen, and others. In wry, lyrical, and sometimes wistful voices, they write of disguising themselves as men for safety, of longing for family left behind or falling in love with people met along the way, and of places as diverse as icy Himalayan passes and dusty American pioneer towns, the darkly wooded Siberian landscape and the lavender-covered hills of Provence. Yet even as their voices, experiences, and paths vary, they share with one another--and with us as readers--reflections upon their gender as it is illuminated by unfamiliar surroundings. Edited and with an Introduction by Mary Morris, in collaboration with Larry O'Connor.Contributors and writings include: Mary Wollstonecraft, "Letters Written During a Short Residence in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark"; Flora Tristan, "Peregrinations of a Pariah"; Frances Trollope, from "Domestic Manners of the Americans"; Eliza Farnham, from "Life in Prairie Land'; Isabella Bird, from "A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains"; Margaret Fountaine, from "Love Among the Butterflies"; Gertrude Bell, from "The Desert and the Sown"; Edith Wharton, from "In Morocco"; Willa Cather, from "Willa Cather in Europe'; Isak Dinesen, from "Out of Africa"; Kate O'Brien, from "Farewell Spain"; Rebecca West, from "Black Lamb and Grey Falcon"; Ella Maillart, from "The Cruel Way"; Emily Hahn, from "Times and Places"; M.F.K. Fisher, from "Long Ago in France"; Joan Didion, from "The White Album"; Christina Dodwell, from "Travels with Fortune: An African Adventure"; Annie Dillard, from "Teaching a Stone to Talk'; Gwendolyn MacEwen, from "Noman's Land"....

Title : Maiden Voyages: Writings of Women Travelers
Author :
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ISBN : 9780679740308
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 464 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Maiden Voyages: Writings of Women Travelers Reviews

  • Emma
    2018-12-10 11:40

    I read this a while ago but must add it to my list so others can discover it too. It's a fascinating collection of stories of women travelers from the 1700s on, many (all?) written in the first person.

  • Deb
    2018-12-12 04:39

    I've read this book several times and will probably read it again this summer. It is a remarkable look at incredible women that traveled the world in a time when it was taboo for women to travel alone. I highly recommend this book to anyone who can't travel but want to.

  • Jo
    2018-12-18 06:25

    Took me years to get this read. Enjoyed the adventure and bravery that are these women. Ready to pass it on!

  • Melissa
    2018-12-14 11:45

    There have always been women travelers, but they haven't been as prominent in the media's eyes and their works have perhaps garnered less attention than they should have. This book compiles the letters, short excerpts of novels of several women travelers over the past couple centuries. Starting in the late 1600's, collections of writings from women traveler's have been compiled in this book and they span until the late 1900's. Some tell of adventures they took with their husbands. Others are solitary travelers and were only able to travel after they were relieved from taking care of their family. Some traveled just for fun while others went with a specific purpose in mind, like hunting butterflies.Each of the writer's had their own style. Some gave great detail, while others were more focused on the reasoning behind the travels and the emotions evoked while traveling. Because of this, there were some stories that I enjoyed and some that I found myself just briefly flipping through as I didn't care for the description or subject matter. I did enjoy the story of the two girls traveling down the river. It was unique and an adventure that not many can say they have done. Because there are so many stories, it is easy to just pick up this book randomly and only read one or two at a time, there's no need to read the book in one sitting.This was an interesting collection of writings. If you like travel or women's studies, it would probably be right up your alley.Maiden VoyagesCopyright 1993438 pagesReview by M. Reynard 2015More of my reviews can be found at

  • Christopher Sutch
    2018-11-27 05:43

    This collection of excerpts from women travel writers ranges widely in both time and place (though more so in time, unfortunately). It does contain some fine work, some of which was relatively unknown to me (Boxcar Bertha's work was particularly interesting, I thought). Often, though, the pieces are a little long and tedious to read, and I was never clear on how the book was arranged (not by chronological order by birth of author; was it chronological by publication date???). The other thing that bothered me was the second-wave feminist purpose of the collection. It is valuable to have writings from Western women travelers, because for so long travel literature was thought of as mainly a male pursuit. However, this collection (published in 1993) would have benefited from some third-wave feminist scholarship, and anthropological/cultural studies scholarship more generally (all of which was available at the time the editors were putting this together) that might have added some reflexivity about the nature of power relations between the tourist and "natives;" that is, the idea that Western women travelers are essentially participating in, if not indeed furthering, a set of imperial power relations that often negatively impact the peoples among whom they travel. It would have been nice to have seen some acknowledgement of this on the part of the editors, if not in the writings of the women themselves.

  • Ann
    2018-12-08 10:41

    Mary Morris, a respected travel writer in her own right, compiled this sparkling, sometimes surprising anthology of women's travel writing. Edith Wharton, Margaret Mead, Willa Cather and Joan Didion - I only need mention these names to express the calibre of the work included.It was so interesting to note each woman's reaction to a foreign culture, or to the act of traveling, itself. Some marveled, some removed themselves a slight distance, cooly observing; some immersed themselves in the experience, completely present in the here-and-now of which they were writing.There were heart-warming stories of kindness and friendship across cultural divides; there were surprising stories like that of one woman's opium addiction which was acquired and cured in China. There were frightening, thrilling stories of danger just avoided. I appreciated the variety of experiences and styles that Morris chose to include.Maiden Voyages was the perfect armchair traveling companion. I defintely give it the highest marks!

  • Hillary
    2018-12-13 08:31

    I love short stories because the writer conveys so much in a limitted space. I'm a New Yorker, I want more info in less time. I was given this book to read while vacation. It was perfects I picked short stories about travels in the country that I was going to visit. It was beautiful to parallel a writers view of a city with my own.

  • J
    2018-11-20 07:45

    This book took me forever to read. There are a many great stories in this tome but many I could have done without. On a positive note, this book pointed me towards some other great books to read, in full.

  • Barbara
    2018-12-08 10:50

    A collection of short pieces written by women travelers from the 17th century to the 20th. I took it along on my trip to England last summer as an appropriate book. The selections vary greatly in tone, length, subject and I tended to skip around a bit.

  • Suzanne
    2018-12-06 05:38

    Interesting excerpts of various accounts by women travelers from Spain to pre-WWII China. Some better than others, but none of the selections are very long. Good for whetting the appetite to read more from some of the contributors.

  • Keri
    2018-12-17 05:50

    Excellent selection of writings by women. The writings by women of the 19th century have been really interesting to read and see what sort of social and cultural issues they had to deal with at the time.

  • Carrie
    2018-12-04 10:44

    As with many compilations, there were some pieces in here that were excellent, and some that were just enh. The sum total was that there were lengthy periods of time where I just could not bring myself to get through the rest of the book, although I enjoyed some of it when I finally did.

  • Martha
    2018-11-23 04:44

    First-hand accounts of women's travels taken from journals, letters and/or books over the last 300 years. Early writings are a very interesting look at the limitations women faced. Nice "bedside" book of short stories.

  • April
    2018-11-29 10:28

    SARK recommended.

  • Florence
    2018-11-24 06:31

    I enjoyed to contemporary travel accounts the most.

  • Cerenity
    2018-12-17 09:46

    “The lady tourist will ever be, to her sex at large, but a meteoric flash amidst the hosts of fixed stars that stud the sky (Crawford, 46).”

  • L Greyfort
    2018-12-06 11:32

    Definitely an anthology to savor -- the selection of so many very different essays makes this a wonderful way to introduce oneself to new and fascinating writers -- take off with them!

  • Barb
    2018-11-30 07:50

    inspiring and lovely

  • Tenhertine
    2018-12-15 12:49

    a terrifically entertaining book!