Re-Mapping Travel Writing w/ Tim Hannigan and Georgina Lawton

10 Oct 2021 – 16:30 - 17:30 BST
Cheltenham Festival
The Inkpot, Montpellier Gardens, Cheltenham GL50 1UW

What is the point of travel writing in a world already widely mapped and documented, and who are the modern-day writers and explorers shaping the way that we experience and interpret the world? Find out in this fascinating discussion between Tim Hannigan and Georgina Lawton, moderated by Jenny Coad.


In The Travel Writing Tribe, lifelong travel writing aficionado Tim Hannigan speaks with many legendary practitioners – from Dervla Murphy to William Dalrymple – to trace the history of the genre and explore some of its controversies. Georgina Lawton‘s Black Girls Take World, a travel bible for young women of colour, introduces a new generation of storytellers and change-makers determined to rewrite their own travel narratives. They talk to Jenny Coad, deputy travel editor at The Times and The Sunday Times, about where travel writing can go in the 21st century.

About The Travel Writing Tribe

Where can travel writing go in the twenty-first century? Author and lifelong travel writing aficionado Tim Hannigan sets out in search of this most venerable of genres, hunting down its legendary practitioners and confronting its greatest controversies. Is it ever okay for travel writers to make things up, and just where does the frontier between fact and fiction lie? What actually is travel writing, and is it just a genre dominated by posh white men? What of travel writing’s queasy colonial connections?

Travelling from Monaco to Eton, from wintry Scotland to sun-scorched Greek hillsides, Hannigan swills beer with the indomitable Dervla Murphy, sips tea with the doyen of British explorers, delves into the diaries of Wilfred Thesiger and Patrick Leigh Fermor, and gains unexpected insights from Colin Thubron, Samanth Subramanian, Kapka Kassabova, William Dalrymple and many others. But along the way he realises how much is at stake: can his own love of travel writing survive this journey?

The Travel Writing Tribe tackles head on the fierce critical debates usually confined to strictly academic discussions of the genre. This highly original book compels readers and travellers of all kinds to think about travel writing in new ways.

About Tim Hannigan

Tim Hannigan is a writer and academic, and the author of several narrative history books, including A Brief History of Indonesia and the award-winning Raffles and the British Invasion of Java. He holds a PhD from the University of Leicester. He was born in Cornwall and lives in Ireland.


£10* plus booking fee

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