Programme: Hakluyt Society Symposium 2021 – Decolonising Travel Studies: Sources and Approaches

10-12 November 2021
University of Warwick (online via Zoom)

(All times are GMT+0/UTC)

The Hakluyt Society, the Global History and Culture Centre (GHCC) at the University of Warwick, and Medieval and Early Modern Orients (MEMOs), invite you to the Hakluyt Society Symposium 2021 – Decolonising Travel Studies: Sources and Approaches. Attendance is free and all are welcome.

To register, please email:

Contacts: Natalya Din-Kariuki ( and Guido van Meersbergen (

Day 1: Wednesday 10 November 2021

14.00-14.15: Introduction and Welcome (Natalya Din-Kariuki and Guido van Meersbergen)

14.15-15.45: Panel 1: Decolonising Travel Studies in Theory and Practice (Chair: Caitlin Vandertop)

  • Daniel Vitkus: “Racialized Capitalism, Intersectionality, and Early Modern Travel Studies”
  • Denise Saive Castro: “Contemplating Slavery on the African West Coast: A Comparison of Portuguese and Dutch Travel Accounts with the Correspondence of Nepemba Angiga, also known as Afonso I of Kongo”
  • Sander Molenaar: “Deconstructing the ‘Imperial Gaze’ in Chinese Travel Writing: A New Look at Ma Huan’s Ying ya sheng lan (Overall Survey of the Ocean’s Shores)”
  • Carl Thompson: “Conjectures on Travel Writing as World Literature”

15.45-16.00: Break

16.00-17.15: Panel 2: Travel and Decolonisation Today (Chair: Ladan Niayesh)

  • Sandhya Patel: “Peopling the Pitt Rivers Cook-Voyage Collections on the World Wide Web”
  • R. Benedito Ferrão: “The Black Antarctic: Decoloniality and Queer Ecology in Mojisola Adebayo’s Moj of the Antarctic
  • Joanne Lee: “All Roads Lead to Africa: Decolonizing the Imperial City”

17.15-17.30: Break

17.30-19.00: Panel 3: Images and Imaginations: Visual and Cartographic Sources (Chair: Daniel Carey)

  • Farah Bazzi: “Seeing the ‘Maghreb’ by Looking at the Americas: Rethinking the Transmission of Cartographic Knowledge in the Ottoman World through the Piri Reis Map of 1513”
  • Louise McCarthy: “Cartographic Silence and Muted Voices: Reading the Subtexts of British Maps of Early Colonial Virginia (1606-1624)
  • Sara Caputo: “Travels Carved on the Pathless Ocean: European Ship Tracks and (De)colonial Mobility”
  • Apurba Chatterjee: “Travel, Visuality, and the British Indian Empire: James Baillie Fraser in the Himalayas”

Day 2: Thursday 11 November 2021

09.30-10.45: Roundtable 1: Decolonial Approaches to British Sources and Archives by TIDE (Chair: Nandini Das)

  • Speakers: Haig Smith, Lauren Working, Emily Stevenson, and Tom Roberts

10.45- 11.15: Break

11.15- 12.15: Roundtable 2: Decolonising Travel Studies: A Student-led Conversation by participants of the Warwick Undergraduate Research Support Scheme (Chair: Guido van Meersbergen)

  • Speakers: Chhaya Rai, Nida Mahmud, Kevin Molloy, Declan Dadzie

12.15-12.30: Publishing with the Hakluyt Society: What and How?

  • Speaker: Katherine Parker

12.30-13.15 Lunch break

13.15-14.30 Panel 4: Black Travellers in the Twentieth Century: Oppression and Liberation (Chair: Dexnell Peters)

  • Kiranpreet Kaur: “Eslanda Robeson’s Congo Diary”
  • Zachary Peterson: “Africans in America and Americans in Africa: The American Committee on Africa, its Travels to the Continent, and its Sponsorship of African Travelers to the US”
  • Janet Remmington: “Navigating Apartheid: Black Women Travelling”

14.30-14.45: Break

14.45-16.00: Panel 5: New Sources, Genres, and Perspectives (Chair: Julia Kuehn)

  • Judith E. Bosnak: “Javanese Language Travelogues as ‘New’ Sources for the History of Travel”
  • Gábor Gelléri: “Colonial Tourism, De-centered”
  • Ettore Morelli: “The Diary of Morena Abraham Aaron Moletsane mor’a Moroa-ha-a-buse, 1952: African Traveller and Historian”

16.00-16.30: Break

16.30-18.00: Keynote lecture: “Travelling While Black” (Chair: Natalya Din-Kariuki)

Speaker: Nanjala Nyabola

Author of Travelling While Black (2020)

Day 3: Friday 12 November 2021

09.30-10.45: Roundtable 3: Decolonial Orientations: Travel Studies and the Pre-Modern Islamic Worldby Medieval and Early Modern Orients (Chair: Hassana Moosa)

  • Speakers: Lubaaba Al-Azami, Amrita Sen, Maria Shmygol, and Nat Cutter

10.45-11.15: Break

11.15-12.30: Panel 6: Recovering Indigenous Voices (Chair: Joan-Pau Rubiés)

  • Zoltán Biedermann: “Seeing the Invisible Hand: Retrieving Indigenous Agency from Early Iberian Travel Accounts, c.1500”
  • Lucas Aleixo Pires dos Reis & Roberth Daylon: “‘Foods that are self-served’: Methodologies for the Study of Unstated African Presences in Travel Accounts”
  • Anna Melinda Testa-De Ocampo: “Alexander Dalrymple and the Natural Curiosities in Sooloo (1770)”

12.30-13.30: Lunch break

13.30-14.45: Panel 7: South Asian Travellers, Religion, and Transnationalism (Chair: Somak Biswas)

  • Daniel Majchrowicz: “Muslim Women and Travel Writing: Rediscovering a Forgotten Archive”
  • Muhamed Riyaz Chenganakkattil: “‘Connected Stories’ of Muslim Pilgrimage to Mecca: Decolonizing the Travel Writing through South Asian Hajj Narratives”
  • Nupur Bandyopadhyay: “A Journey to Justice: Transnational Civil Rights and Ramnath Biswas, an Indian Globetrotter from Bengal, 1937-40”

14.45-15.15 Break

15.15-16.30: Panel 8: Reorienting Travel Studies: Perspectives from Europe’s Fringes (Chair: Eva Johanna Holmberg)

  • Sharyl Corrado: “Evgeniia Maier (1865-1951): Noblewoman and Nomad”
  • Janne Lahti: “Settler Colonial Eyes in Unexpected Places: Finnish Travel Writers and Settler Colonization on the Arctic Ocean”
  • Nadiya Chushak: “‘First female travel blogger’: Sofiya Yablonska-Oudin’s Works and their Perception in Contemporary Ukraine”

16.45-18.00: Roundtable 4: Decolonising Travel Studies in the Classroom (Chair: Natalya Din-Kariuki and Eva Johanna Holmberg)

  • Speakers: Nandini Das, Jyotsna Singh, Nedda Mehdizadeh, and Gerald Maclean


Programme (pdf)