© 2016

Irish Cultures of Travel

Writing on the Continent, 1829-1914


Table of contents

About this book


This book analyses travel texts aimed at the emergent Irish middle classes in the long nineteenth century. Unlike travel writing about Ireland, Irish travel writing about foreign spaces has been under-researched. Drawing on a wide range of neglected material and focusing on selected European destinations, this study draws out the distinctive features of an Irish corpus that often subverts dominant trends in Anglo-Saxon travel writing. As it charts Irish participation in a new ‘mass’ tourism, it shows how that participation led to heated ideological debates in Victorian and Edwardian Irish print culture. Those debates culminate in James Joyce’s ‘The Dead’, which is here re-read through new discursive contextualizations. This book sheds new light on middle-class culture in pre-independence Ireland, and on Ireland’s relation to Europe. The methodology used to define its Irish corpus also makes innovative contributions to the study of travel writing. 


Irish literature Travel writing James Joyce Print culture Tourism

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of LiteratureKatholieke Universiteit LeuvenLeuvenBelgium

About the authors

Raphaël Ingelbien is Reader in Literary Studies at the University of Leuven, Belgium. He is the author of Misreading England: Poetry and Nationhood since the Second World War (2002), and has published widely on nineteenth- and twentieth-century British and Irish writing in various journals and edited collections. 

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Irish Cultures of Travel
  • Book Subtitle Writing on the Continent, 1829-1914
  • Authors Raphaël Ingelbien
  • Series Title New Directions in Irish and Irish American Literature
  • Series Abbreviated Title New Directions in Irish and Irish American Literature
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, London
  • eBook Packages Literature, Cultural and Media Studies Literature, Cultural and Media Studies (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-1-137-56783-3
  • Softcover ISBN 978-1-349-84952-9
  • eBook ISBN 978-1-137-56784-0
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages IX, 252
  • Number of Illustrations 1 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics British and Irish Literature
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


“Irish Cultures of Travel introduces readers to a wealth of original, primary research that nuances how we classify British travel writing in the long nineteenth century. It is therefore crucial reading not only to Irish cultural and literary historians, but also to a wider range of nineteenth-century travel writing scholars for its innovative methodologies and fruitful intersections.” (Rebecca Butler, Studies in Travel Writing, Vol. 22 (3), 2018)

“This book is an important contribution to the study of the massification of tourism at a time of technological, infrastructural, and social change in Irish society. Charting a range of European destinations, Ingelbien expertly highlights increased Irish participation in the modern phenomenon of democratized travel and the emergence of a new constituency of tourists that results in evolving strategies for Irish travel.” (Anne O'Connor, Journeys, Vol. 19 (01), June, 2018)

“The reach of Ingelbien’s research is impressive, and includes a welcome discussion of Irish women travellers, such as the antiquarian Margaret Stokes, within its brief. … Raphael Ingelbien’s deft and elegant study offers a lively evocation of pre-independence Irish tourist culture, and within that, an informed and timely portrait of nineteenth-century Ireland’s assertive and mobile middle class.” (Eve Patten, Review of Irish Studies in Europe – RISE, Vol. 2 (1-4), March, 2018)

“This is a well-researched and persuasive book. It is well placed within the historiography on travel and tourism and is a useful contribution to that field. … a well-written book, which demonstrates sound scholarship and makes thought-provoking contributions to several discussions within the historiography of Irish studies and the history of tourism and travel.” (Katherine Haldane Grenier, Victorian Studies, Vol. 60 (03), 2018)

“Ingelbien provides an illuminating chronicle of Ireland’s relationship to travel, charting it through Irish prescriptions of religion, nationalism, feminism and recreation. What this book ultimately presents is an intriguing account of Ireland’s search for identity, seeking out the exotic in order to ‘see Ireland first’.” (Louisa Carroll, Books Ireland, Issue 374, August, 2017)

“Raphaël Ingelbien’s Irish Cultures of Travel: Writing on the Continent, 1829-1914 is an engaging, highly readable, and frequently insightful treatment of a fascinating and hitherto neglected area of travel and tourism studies. … this highly readable book will be useful for students and a pleasure for scholars as well as general readers whose interests include travel, Irish studies, or even post-colonialism generally.” (Donald I. Ulin, breac,, June, 2017)