The Transcultural Self: Mapping a French Identity in Contemporary Australian Women’s Travel Memoirs
Striking is the desire among many of these writers to claim a French identity, as evidenced in titles such as: Almost French, How to Be French, My French Life. The paper seeks to understand what enables Frenchness to appear as readily accessible to this group of Australian women and what this version of Frenchness entails. It investigates what constitutes cultural belonging in these memoirs, and the ‘technologies of the self’ by means of which this new identity is crafted, assumed and circulated as a template for others to follow. Curiously, neither a high level of French language proficiency nor long-term residence are considered essential attributes. More often, the authors focus on the availability of alternative forms of female subjectivity, and the invention of a transcultural self is articulated in terms of cultural paradigms of femininity and gender relations.
Adler, J. 1989, 'Travel as a Performed Art, ' American Journal of Sociology, vol. 94, no. 6, 136691. http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/229158
Ambrose, M. 2005, How to Be French. New Holland Publishers, Frenchs Forest, NSW.
Archer, V. 2006, My French Life. Penguin Australia, Camberwell, Vic.
Archer, V. 2009, French Essence: Ambience, Beauty and Style in Provence. Penguin Australia, Camberwell, Vic.
Besemeres, M. 2008, 'Australian Immersion" Narratives: Memoirs of Contemporary Language Travel, ' in Transnational Ties: Australian Lives in the World, (eds) D. Deacon, P. Russell & A.Woollacott. ANU E Press, Canberra, 24557."
Bourdieu, P. 1979. La Distinction: Critique sociale du jugement. Editions de Minuit, Paris.
Butler, J. 1990, Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. Routledge, New York.
Corbett, B. 2007, A Town Like Paris: Falling in Love in the City of Light. Hachette Australia, Sydney, NSW.
Coulson, C. 2008, Paris Tango. Penguin Australia, Camberwell, Vic.
Foucault, M. 1988, 'Technologies of the Self, ' in Technologies of the Self: A Seminar with Michel Foucault, (eds) L.H. Martin, H. Gutman & Pa.H. Hutton. University of Massachusetts Press, Amherst, 1649.
Genoni, P. 2007, 'Unbecoming Australians: Crisis and Community in the Australian Villa/ge Book, ' Australian Literary Studies, vol. 23, no. 2, 21329.
Greenblatt, S.J. 1991, Marvelous Possessions: The Wonder of the New World. University of Chicago Press, Chicago. http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226306575.001.0001
Hanna, B.E. & =de Nooy, J. 2006, 'The Seduction of Sarah: Travelers' Tales and Intercultural Learning, ' Portal: Journal of Multidisciplinary International Studies, vol. 3, no. 2. Online, available: http://epress.lib.uts.edu.au/ojs/index.php/portal/article/view/117/311 [Accessed 1 July 2010].
Holdforth, L. 2004, True Pleasures: A Memoir of Women in Paris. Vintage, Milsons Point, NSW.
Holland, P. & Huggan, G. 1998, Tourists with Typewriters: Critical Reflections on Contemporary Travel Writing. University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor.
Kershaw, A. 1993, Village to Village: Misadventures in France. Angus & Robertson, Pymble, NSW.
Lancaster, R. 2008, Je suis australienne: Remarkable Women in France, 1880-1945. University of Western Australia Press, Crawley, WA.
Mayle, P. 1990, A Year in Provence. Knopf, New York.
McCulloch, J. 2008, La Vie Parisienne: Looking for Loveand the Perfect Lingerie. Pier 9, Millers Point, NSW.
Moy-Antn, E. 2011, 'British Literary Diaspora in the Mediterranean: The (Re)Creation of the Sunny South, "' Kaleidoscope, vol. 5, no. 1. Online, available: http://www.dur.ac.uk/kaleidoscope/issues/v5i1/ [Accessed 1 July 2012]."
Nielsen, E. 2007, Buying a Piece of Paris: Finding a Key to the City of Love. Scribe, Carlton North, Vic.
Pesman, R. 1996, Duty Free: Australian Women Abroad. Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Vic.
Pratt, M.L. 2008, Imperial Eyes: Travel Writing and Transculturation. 2nd ed., Routledge, London & New York.
Rojek, C. & Urry, J. (eds) 1997, Touring Cultures: Transformations of Travel and Theory. Routledge, London & New York. http://dx.doi.org/10.4324/9780203427736
Tisdale, S. 1995, 'Never Let the Locals See Your Map; Why Most Travel Writers Should Stay Home, ' Harper's Magazine, 1 September: 6674.
Turnbull, S. 2002, Almost French: A New Life in Paris. Bantam Australia, Milsons Point, NSW.
Wearing, B. 1998, Leisure and Feminist Theory. Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA. http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781446278970
White, R. 1987, 'The Soldier as Tourist: The Australian Experience of the Great War, ' War & Society, vol. 5, no. 1, 6377. http://dx.doi.org/10.1179/106980487790305175
Whitlock, G. 2000, The Intimate Empire: Reading Women's Autobiography. Cassell, London & New York.