Title Page, Copyright

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-x

Two weeks before I submitted the final manuscript of this book, our trusty Volvo wagon died. “The Glide” was just shy of 200,000 miles. Although the timing was bad, I could not have planned a better metaphor. Retiring The Glide deepened my reflection on the miles traveled over the course of developing this project. This book is a milestone achieved because of the support, effort, and company of many people. It is a pleasure to thank them here....

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Introduction

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pp. 1-16

In the year following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, RV sales and rentals in the United States soared. The Recreational Vehicle Industry Association reported “a record surge” in its American business (Wille). Beginning in the fourth quarter of 2001 and continuing through 2002, RV rentals rose by 30 percent (Sloan), while RV sales in the first five months of 2002 jumped more than 20 percent compared with 2001 (“High Rollers”). This RV trend was...

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1. Early Road Narrativesand the “Voyage into Democracy”

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pp. 17-52

Six years before the appearance of her best-selling classic Etiquette, Emily Post authored a road narrative. Appearing in 1916, By Motor to the Golden Gate describes her journey from New York City to the Panama-Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco taken the previous year with her son and a cousin. On assignment for Collier’s magazine, Post was, in her editor’s words, “to find out how far you can go pleasurably! When you find it too uncomfortable, come home!” (Post 8). In these early days of cross-country...

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2. Post –World War II Reorientations of Racialized Masculinity

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pp. 53-105

The road narrative genre experienced an upsurge in the decades following World War II. Jack Kerouac’s On the Road (1957) and the TV series Route 66 (1960 – 64) achieved mass popularity, John Howard Griffin’s Black Like Me (1961) became a bestseller, and John Steinbeck’s Travels with Charley: In Search of America (1961) appeared the same year the writer won the Nobel Prize for literature. Diverse in medium and message, this group of texts nonetheless shares a common core: in this period, the story of mobility...

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3. Troubling Scale in Women’s Road Narratives of the 1980s and 1990s

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pp. 106-150

Though prevalent before War World II, road narratives featuring female travelers disappeared after the war, suggesting that, among other things, discourses of mobility were prominently articulated and defined in relation to an ideology of masculinity during the cold war and civil rights eras.1 With the 1980s, female protagonists return, but their return marks a departure from earlier scripts. In Barbara Kingsolver’s...

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4. Agitating Space and Stories: Late Twentieth-Century Native American Road Narratives

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pp. 151-186

While Thelma and Louise make the ultimate decision to “keep goin’,” the road narratives of this chapter complicate that trajectory, undertaking mobility as a historical project, a way to go back — and come again. Introducing Native American viewpoints, these texts represent mobility as a mode of incorporating personal, communal, and historical pasts into the present. The texts, then, insist that the process of incorporation enacted by mobility is never just spatial; it is also temporal. In David Seals’s...

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5. Reviving (Re)Productivity: Post-9/ 11 Stories of Mobility in the Homeland

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pp. 187-224

While the road narratives of the last chapter expanded the realms of incorporation that mobility navigates, the texts in this chapter take the relationship between mobility and incorporation to another scale. In these road stories, produced in the years following the 9/11 attacks, mobility itself undergoes reincorporation as a mode of identity formation. More specifically, Jim Jarmusch’s...

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Epilogue: Postrecession Mobility, Placing Mythology

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pp. 225-230

The opening sequence of Nebraska, the 2013 road film directed by Alexander Payne, immerses us in a landscape of mobilities. The camera holds steady on a long shot of a local route. Traffic streams away from and toward the viewer. To the left of the road, a large sign extends into the air: “Tire Factory.” To the right, a solitary figure walks on a narrow strip of snow-covered ground toward the camera. And on his right, on the other side of a chain-link fence, a freight train sits idle on the tracks. The automobile, the...

Notes

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pp. 231-240

Works Cited

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pp. 241-252

Index

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pp. 253-262