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Questions of Travel: William Morris in Iceland

Questions of Travel: William Morris in Iceland

by Lavinia Greenlaw

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Poet and novelist Lavinia Greenlaw's poetic reflections on William Morris's Icelandic Journal, one of the overlooked masterpieces of travel literature

The great Victorian designer and decorative artist William Morris was fascinated by Iceland and wrote a book documenting his travels there. He gets caught up with questions of travel, noting his reaction to the idea of leaving or arriving, to hurry and delay, what it means to dread a place you’ve never been to or to encounter the actuality of a long-held vision. He is sensitive to the emotional landscape of his band of travelers and, above all, continuously analyzing and fixing this “most romantic of all deserts.”

Lavinia Greenlaw follows in his footsteps, and interposes his prose with her own “questions of travel.” The result is a new and composite work that brilliantly explores our conflicted reasons for not staying at home.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781910749340
Publisher: New York Review Books
Publication date: 03/07/2017
Sold by: Penguin Random House Publisher Services
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 224
File size: 565 KB

About the Author

William Morris (1834–1896) was the foremost English designer of his time, a polemicist and reformer, poet and traveler. He is regarded as one of the myriadminded giants of the nineteenth century, and his graphic and wallpaper designs are still highly popular today.

Lavinia Greenlaw is a poet, novelist, documentary filmmaker, and BBC broadcaster. She studied seventeenth-century art at the Courtauld Institute of Art and was awarded a three-year NESTA Fellowship to pursue her interest in vision, travel, and perception. Her poetry includes Minsk and The Casual Perfect. She is also the author of two novels, Mary George of Allnorthover and An Irresponsible Age: Thoughts of a Night Sea (in collaboration with Gerry Fabian Miller), and the nonfiction book The Importance of Music to Girls. She is a professor of creative writing at the University of East Anglia.

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