The Art Of Traveling Urban Sojourns

"In the Old Days tourism didn't exist. Gypsies, Tinkers and other true nomads even now roam about their worlds at will, but no one would therefore think of calling them 'tourists'." -Overcoming Tourism, Hakim Bey

What does it mean to be a 'tourist'?
What are the alternatives?
How can we go about changing the practices and discourses that make us tourists and not something more… I don't know… romantic? Something more fulfilling?

These questions, as well as Hakim's reflection, will act as a point of departure as we collectively renegotiate what it means to travel, and to be a traveler in our post-everything world. During the course we will (lightly) engage travel-narratives by Henry Miller, J.R.R. Tolkien, Guy Debord, Ernest Hemingway, the guy who wrote Hopping Freight Trains In America, Henry David Thoreau, Paul Bowels, Nobokov, and Jack Kerouac. However, more important than the words of these people will be our engagement with penpals, 'travel photography', exotic alcohol, and nature walks. Most important of all, we will let our personal insight lead us into the terra incognita that is the world that awaits to be re-discovered. This world, of course, awaits not only in lands far away, but also outside our door, and, perhaps most elusively, within our own minds. Running interests will include food, drink, sleep, maps, sex, the law, nature, animal companions, customs, companionship, and all earthly delights!

With a bit of luck and the wind behind us, we will host some guest lecturers from the urban cycling group SCUL, Harvard Divinity School, and beyond.

Method/Procedures: shared inquiry, light reading, ventures around town, trips to NYC-Brooklyn, camping adventures, and both walking and biking trips to other interesting environs.
Schedule: to be collaboratively decided at May 15 scheduling meeting
Location: Cambridge/Boston/Somerville, MA
Fees: FREE!
Teacher:Christian Greer

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