English, Department of
“Plain Broad Narratives of Substantial Facts”: Credibility, Narrative, and Hakluyt’s Principall Navigations
Date of this Version
Renaissance Quarterly 59 (2006): 768–794
This article compares voyage narratives printed in Richard Hakluyt’s 1589 Principall Navigations to contemporaneous travel histories in an effort to contextualize the epistemological status of each group of texts and debunk the former’s reputation for greater factuality. It critiques the use commonly made of Hakluyt’s narratives in literary studies, arguing that the privileging of these texts over other sources results in postcolonial studies that ironically valorize a type of writing which promoted the colonial mindset these studies seek to expose.
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