4th June 2019 by

Flaneuse (Thu 6 June)

This week we discuss a chapter and epilogue from Lauren Elkin’s book Flâneuse: Women Walk the City in Paris, New York, Tokyo, Venice, and London (2016). Many thanks to Liam Harrison for suggesting our reading this week. In this chapter, titled ‘Return’, Elkin reflects on movement, identity, and her own relationship to New York.


The chapter ‘Return’ and the Epilogue in Lauren Elkin’s Flaneuse: PDF. Note: for some links, and always for scanned PDFs, you will need to log in using your University of Birmingham username and password to access the reading. Please email d.butchard@bham.ac.uk if this doesn’t work for you.

Time & Place:
  • 14:00-15:30, Thu 6 June 2019
  • Arts 247 (Dorothy’s office)
“It has been a privilege to be able to give form to my wanderlust, to range from the US to Europe to Asia and back again, encountering only the mildest of resistance. But I have learned that it is an act of empathy to be able to un-root yourself, to recognise that none of us are protected by place. Beware roots. Beware purity. Beware fixity. Beware the creeping feeling that you belong. Embrace flow, impurity, fusion.” – Lauren Elkin, Flâneuse, p.279.

About the Doctoral Seminar:

This is an informal weekly reading group run for postgraduates within the Department of English Literature. We select a short text to read in advance, often a work of theory, then meet to discuss it. The seminar provides an opportunity to consider aspects of the reading that were thought-provoking or challenging for you, think about how it relates to texts you may have studied or plan to read, and share aspects of your own research and academic practice. It’s also a chance to get together, try out ideas, and meet fellow postgraduate researchers. There will be tea, coffee and biscuits and you are very welcome!