Library Treasure Tour - The Golden Age of Travel: Alexander von Humboldt and his Contemporaries

Sat Dec 18 2021 at 02:00 pm UTC-05:00

The German Society of Pennsylvania | Philadelphia

The German Society of Pennsylvania
Publisher/HostThe German Society of Pennsylvania
Library Treasure Tour - The Golden Age of Travel: Alexander von Humboldt and his Contemporaries
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Enjoy armchair travel around the world in this hands-on seminar, which is led by a professor of history who has written widely on cultural encounters in travel accounts, music and literature.
Center stage will be Alexander von Humboldt, celebrated around the world for his journey through the Americas from 1799 to 1804. Today, dozens of copies of his books sit on the shelves of the German Society of Pennsylvania Library, and we will study several of them during this Treasure Tour. Before making his grand journey, Humboldt apprenticed as a traveler with Georg Forster, famous for traveling around the world with Captain Cook. Forster and Humboldt travelled through the Rhineland together, and the Library owns a copy of Forster’s account of their experiences. After Humboldt came a generation of travelers who emulated his mix of scientific reporting and colorful literary style in works owned by the German Society. The aristocrat Maximilian von Wied journeyed through Brazil; Adelbert von Chamisso, famed for his poetry, went on a Russian scientific voyage around the world; Hermann von Schlagentweit and his two brothers led an expedition through India for the British government. The Library’s collection of Baedekers – the popular guides to anywhere and everywhere, which eased travel for the middle class – will round out this tour of travel’s golden age. Pack your bags for a fascinating journey into history!
Library Treasure Tours are offered in English, and no knowledge of the German language is required to participate. Tickets are limited for this hands-on, interactive event, so please register early. The tour will be offered again at a later date. Please email [email protected] with questions.
About the Presenter: Harry Liebersohn is Center for Advanced Study Professor of History, Emeritus, University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana). His research centers on cultural encounters between European and non-European peoples since the late eighteenth century. He has been a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, the Institute for Advanced Study (Wissenschaftskolleg), Berlin, and the American Academy in Berlin. Among his many books are Aristocratic Encounters: European Travelers and American Indians (Cambridge University Press, 1998), The Traveler’s World: Europe to the Pacific(Harvard University Press, 2008), and Music and the New Global Culture: From the Great Exhibitions to the Jazz Age(University of Chicago Press, 2019). Frequently asked to give academic presentations, in October 2018 he gave the Zhu Kezhen Distinguished Lectures at Zheziang University, China. In 2017 he was the recipient of a Humboldt Research Award, a lifetime achievement prize awarded by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.
Proof of vaccination is required to attend this event. Please bring your vaccination card (or a clear picture of it) and a valid photo ID.
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The German Society of Pennsylvania, 611 Spring Garden St, Philadelphia, United States

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