“The writer died at Autun in her 26th year”

genre, health tourism and Anna Jameson’s Diary of an Ennuyée

Stephanie Russo*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In Diary of an Ennuyée (1826), Anna Jameson notoriously combines what is otherwise a rather conventional travel narrative with the romantic tale of its languishing female narrator. The narrative concludes with the death of the narrator, and this overtly fictional element in what otherwise presents itself as a factual piece of writing has proved immensely troubling for readers of Jameson’s text from its initial publication until today. Variously read as a failed experiment and/or a hoax, Jameson’s work is instead, I argue, a parodic exploration of both the growing interest in health tourism, as well as a satiric engagement with the burgeoning genre of invalid travel literature. Diary of an Ennuyee is not a mistake, an aberration, or a hoax, but rather should be read as a lively, self-reflexive satire on the contemporary fashion for seeking health on foreign shores, and writing about it.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)200-213
Number of pages14
JournalStudies in Travel Writing
Volume20
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Apr 2016

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