Alternative modernities in French travel writing: engaging urban space in London and New York, 1851–1986,
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BOOK REVIEW Alternative modernities in French travel writing: engaging urban space in London and New York, 1851–1986, by Gillian Jein, Anthem Studies in Travel, London, Anthem Press, 2016, 278 pp., $115.00 (hardback), ISBN 9781783085125 In Alternative Modernities in French Travel Writing, Gillian Jein focusses on the travel writing of eight French authors and their studies of London and New York. The book’s time frame stretches 135 years from Jules Janin’s account of the London Exhibition of 1851 to Jean Baudrillard’s journey across America in the mid-1980s providing ample scope to explore Jein’s notion of modernities. This modernity has its roots in Georg Simmel’s 1903 essay on how the modern city dweller faces the challenges of consuming goods produced anonymously for the market. However, Jein argues for alternatives to this.
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