"THE FIVE REASONS OF TRAVEL": A LOOK AT EARLY TWENTIETH CENTURY BRITISH TRAVEL WRITINGS ON THE MIDDLE EAST AS PRIMARY HISTORICAL DOCUMENTS
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I have been fascinated by travel and, therefore, travel books, for as long as I can remember. When funds or time were not available for actual travel, I found the armchair variety to be almost as exciting and stimulating. Thus, my love of this particular genre led me to Robert Byron's The Road to Oxiana. This masterpiece of travel literature, in turn, led me to the works of the other authors mentioned within this senior thesis. I have often felt that such books were neglected by historians, for within their pages can be found countless cultural and historical references of import. With recent world events focused on the Middle East, the works of Wilfred Thesiger, Freya Stark, Evelyn Waugh, and Robert Byron have the potential to answer many questions about the history of the region and the West's involvement with it.
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