Inverting the Tourist Gaze

Published in Journal of Literature and Aesthetics, University of Sydney

This essay is a reflection on the beauty of travel. My intention was to convey the transformational aspect of travel, how it enhances our perception of beauty and Self-reflection.  I used here some of my favourite philosophers such as Plotinus and Abhinavagupta, as well as that dark angel Baudelaire. I used excerpts from writings of Bruce Chatwin, Jan Morris, Freya Stark, Luis Bunuel, Flaubert and others to show their focus on the inner experience and reflection when travelling.  I think that the most interesting part of the paper shows how Abhinavagupta and Baudelaire included the ugly and ‘repulsive’ in their perception of beauty as a means of attaining higher states of consciousness.

Click here to download the essay.