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William A. Gleason

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780814732465

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814732465.001.0001

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Imperial Bungalow

Imperial Bungalow

Structures of Empire in Richard Harding Davis and Olga Beatriz Torres

(p.105) 3 Imperial Bungalow
Sites Unseen

William A. Gleason

NYU Press

This chapter sets Olga Beatriz Torres' Memorias de mi viaje against two widely known texts of transit, revolution, and the buildingscape of empire-Richard Harding Davis' travelogue Three Gringos in Venezuela and Central America (1896), and his follow-up imperial romance, Soldiers of Fortune (1897). It underlines the revealing ways in which these narratives diverge: their contrasting notions of what it means to be displaced or dislocated, their chiastic longings for safety and return, and their conflicting perspectives on the uses of U.S. military power. At the same time, these texts contain important points of convergence about race, architecture, and empire at the turn of the twentieth century, particularly within the material context of what Professor Kirsten Silva Gruesz has identified as “not simply an object of U.S. expansionism but the original engine of it”: the Gulf of Mexico.

Keywords:   Olga Beatriz Torres, Memorias de mi viaje, Richard Harding Davis, Soldiers of Fortune, U.S. military power, empire, Gulf of Mexico

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