Amerikafantasier : Kön, medier och visualitet i svenska reseskildringar från USA 1945-63
Sammanfattning: This dissertation examines the construction of an imaginary America in Swedish travel writing from 1945 to 1963. By placing focus on the intersecting dimensions of gender, media, and visuality, the aim is to analyze Swedish notions of the US that surface both in the written word as well as in the illustrative material, by contextualizing these imaginings within the expanding media culture of the time. Visuality is recognized as a meaning-making process and a vital aspect of travel culture; apart from ways of seeing, a range of pictorial expressions as well as visual metaphors are explored. What is argued is that the publications fostered a perspectival pluralism that bears witness to a mobile and ambivalent stance towards this emerging superpower and its modern mass culture.While the first chapter introduces the theoretical framework of this study as drawing on the fields of visual culture-, gender and media studies, the second chapter seeks to map out the historical as well as generic aspects of travel literature in relation to imaginings of America. Next to situating the travel books within a cultural history of media, the study addresses the interface of traveling and mediation. Travel writing is, moreover, conceived as scripting. The third chapter examines the viewing positions adopted by the Swedish travelers by focusing on how the arrival scene in New York and hence their first encounter with the US was depicted. What is stressed is that the presence of America within the Swedish mediascape heavily shaped the travelers? expectations as well as perceptions, creating a mediatized gaze, which often turned their journeys into a ?cinematic? experience. Six stereotypical viewing positions are further discerned among which the travelers oscillated: the Tourist, the Natural Scientist, the Colonialist (expressive of a medial attitude toward the nation) and further the Anti-Hero, the Detective, and the Fl
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