Travellers in Skirts
Dervla Murphy and Sara Wheeler
Travellers in Skirts
CHAIRED BY JOANNA KAVENNA
The Royal Society of Literature would like to invite you to attend what promises to be an exciting event with famed travel writer and cyclist Dervla Murphy, who has written two accounts of her adventurous cycling experiences (Full Tilt: Ireland to India with a Bicycle and Wheels Within Wheels: The Makings of a Traveller).
Bookings: We are able to take payment for bookings over the phone (0207 845 4678), but, as we do not have a box office, we ask that the public book online: http://www.rslit.org/women-travel-writers. Tickets will be sold on a first come, first served basis, for £8. Please note that student bookings are also now open and available to book online. Student tickets will be sold at the discounted price of £5 and student I.D. will be required on the night of the event by all student ticket-holders.
Venue: Kenneth Clark Lecture Theatre, Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 1LA
‘A lady an explorer? A traveller in skirts? … Let them stay and mind the babies, or hem our ragged shirts.’ So wrote a contributor to Punch in 1893. Yet since then women have proved that travel writing is not – and should not be – a male preserve. Dervla Murphy’s first book, Full Tilt: Ireland to India with a Bicycle, was published in 1965, and since then her travels have taken her to countries including Tibet, Nepal, Ethiopia, Rwanda and Peru. A Month by the Sea, published this month, charts a summer in Gaza. Sara Wheeler’s books include the international bestseller Terra Incognita: Travels in Antarctica. In the newly published O My America she looks at the lives of six women who escaped various kinds of misery to go and live in the Deep South in the 19th century. In a conversation chaired by Joanna Kavenna, whose debut, The Ice Museum (2005), was shortlisted for the RSL Ondaatje Prize, they discuss why travel has proved the best way for them to explore their ideas; the appeal of a genre relatively free of convention and rules; and the particular challenges facing women travel writers.