University of Delaware Library

Special Collections Department


PAUL BOWLES, 1910 - 1999


TRAVEL WRITING

As one might expect from an author who was such an inveterate traveler, Paul Bowles was an accomplished travel writer. Like many authors, Bowles used the commissions he received from his travel writing to fund his travel to exotic locales, such as India, Ceylon, Thailand, and North Africa. Their Heads Are Green and Their Hands are BlueBowles wrote travel essays for such conventional magazines as Esquire, Gentleman's Quarterly, Holiday, and Harper's Magazine, but he also wrote essays with a historical or political slant for The Nation, and his travel writing appeared in literary magazines such as American Mercury, Zero, and The London Magazine. But even in his most seemingly-conventional essays for popular magazines, Bowles explored the cultural differences and often humorous or even violent interactions between Westerners in the post-colonial world and the inhabitants of the Third World countries he visited. A substantial selection of Bowles's published travel essays was collected in Their Heads Are Green and Their Hands Are Blue (1963). It is interesting to note that Bowles, in several later projects, generously contributed text or introductions to the work of photographers who shared his sense of discovery with a traveler's eye.

Paul Bowles's papers include substantial materials documenting his travels and his travel writing. Copies of many of the magazines and journals in which his essays first appeared are present. Numerous manuscripts, correspondence, ephemera, memorabilia, and artifactual materials, and a host of other sources are available. Of particular interest are several of Bowles's notebooks which he compiled during his travels. Visually appealing are hundreds of photographs, including many of his own, which are housed among his papers.

 

Travel Writing: Items in the Exhibition

88a. "Yallah." Typescript signed, with autograph corrections, Summer 1955, 14 pp.
Bowles has appended a publishing history of "Yallah" on his manuscript: "published 1956, Conzett & Huber, Zurich; 1957 McDowell & Obolinsky, New York; and 1958, Merlin Press, London."

88b. Yallah. Photos de Peter W. Haeberlin, texte de Paul Bowles Zurich: Manesse, [1956].
This is the first French translation of the text Bowles wrote to accompany this collection of African photographs.

89. "From Notes Taken in Ceylon," in Zero (New York), Vol. 2, no.7 (Spring 1956), pp. 7-19.

All Parrots Speak

90a. "All Parrots Speak." Typescript signed, with autograph corrections, "Tangier, 1954," 14 pp.

90a. "All Parrots Speak." Typescript signed, with autograph corrections, "Tangier, 1954," 14 pp.
The manuscript bears a note added by Bowles on the last page: "published Random House 1963, Peter Owen 1963 'Their Heads are Green'."

90b. Their Heads Are Green and Their Hands Are Blue. New York: Random House, [1963].

91. "Casablanca," in Holiday (New York), Volume 40 (September 1966), pp. 74-79, 108-111, 120-122. Illustrated with drawings by Ronald Searle.

92a. [Notebook from Thailand]. Autograph notebook, [1966], 140 pp.
Bowles's notebook, kept during several months of his 1966 visit to Bangkok, is filled with descriptive observations, journal-like accounts of encounters and adventures, historical and cultural notes, drafts of letters, scenes from his play The Garden, and notes about temple music he recorded on the trip. Laid in the notebook is a pencil sketch of Asian musical instruments, as well as a "Hong Kong Landing Card."

92b. [Notes on Thailand]. Typescript manuscript with autograph corrections, n.d., 75 pp.
In 1966, Bowles contracted with Little Brown to write a book about Bangkok for the publisher's projected series of books on cities. "Notes on Thailand" remains from his unfinished project, dropped, in part, because of his need to return to Tangier to care for his ailing wife Jane. Bowles suggested that his friend Alec Waugh complete the abandoned assignment, resulting in Waugh's Bangkok: the Story of a City (1970).

93. "What's So Different About Marrakesh?," in Travel and Leisure (New York), Volume 1 (June-July 1971), pp. 35-37, 40.

"Brooks"
92b. [Notes on Thailand]. Typescript manuscript with autograph corrections, n.d., 75 pp.

An Island of My Own

94. "An Island of My Own," in Great Escapes,
A Section of the San Francisco Sunday
Examiner & Chronicle (San Francisco),
24 March 1985, pp. 40-42.


94. "An Island of My Own," in Great Escapes, A Section of the San Francisco Sunday Examiner & Chronicle (San Francisco), 24 March 1985, pp. 40-42.
Bowles recounts his life on the island of Taprobane, off the south coast of Sri Lanka.

95a. "The Hakima: Introduction." Typescript with autograph corrections, n.d., 3 pp.
This typescript is the original manuscript of Bowles's introduction to William Betsch's photographic journey through Morocco's famed city, Fez.

95b. The Hakima, a Tragedy in Fez, by William Betsch, with an introduction by Paul Bowles. New York: Aperture Foundation, [1991].

96a. Barry Brukoff to Paul Bowles, typed letter signed, January 22, 1990, 2 pp.

The photographer's letter confirms receipt of copies of articles of Bowles's prior travel writing, which he reviewed for their collaboration in Morocco (1993).

96b. Morocco. Text by Paul Bowles; photographs by Barry Brukoff. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1993.
This is copy 15 of 50 specially-bound copies numbered and signed by the author and the artist, with an original photograph laid in.

97a. Vittorio Santoro to Paul Bowles, typed letter signed, April 8, 1993, 1 p.; with "The Sky" and "A Conversation," typed manuscript with Bowles's editorial notations, "Tangier, November 1992 / March 1993," 4 pp.
"The Sky," with references to projected light, Saharan space, storms, and Sri Lankan sunsets, written for photographer Vittorio Santoro, is perhaps Bowles's most abstract travel piece.

97b. Portraits, Nudes, Clouds: a Book of Photographs, by Vittorio Santoro with text and an interview by Paul Bowles. Zurich: Memory/Cage Editions, 1993.
This is copy 18 of 40 of the Deluxe Edition, signed by Vittorio Santoro and Paul Bowles; with an original photograph, signed and numbered by the photographer, laid in.

98. Morocco: Sahara to the Sea, photographs and text by Mary Cross, preface by Paul Bowles. New York: Abbeville Press Publishers, 1995. Publisher's invitation laid in.

Morocco: Sahara to the Sea

98. Morocco: Sahara to the Sea, photographs and
text by Mary Cross, preface by Paul Bowles.
New York: Abbeville Press Publishers, 1995.


| Introduction | Poetry | Music | Novels | Short Stories | Translations | Life Writing |

Return to Paul Bowles Source Page

Return to List of Exhibitions at the University of Delaware Library


for reference assistance email Special Collections
or contact:
Footer
Back to the UD Special Collections Home Page

This page is maintained by Special Collections

Last modified: 12/21/10
  • UD Library Special Collections  •   181 South College Avenue  •   Newark, DE 19717-5267  •   USA
    Phone: USA +1 302-831-2229  •   ©2014