Representing the Travel Writer’s ‘Other Identity’ in Pietro Della Valle’s Travels in Persia

Document Type : Research Paper


University of Tehran



A comparative study of relations among nations and its evaluation based on the Other’s attitudes generates a deep insight; thence, travelogue is considered a profitable means in this regard. Within the path of knowing the ‘other’, the travel writer paces to know him/herself. Put another way, the writing would culminate in his/her own understanding along with the ‘other’. In this vein, the similarities and cultural differences which are formed in accordance with the travel writer’s prior thought lines or prejudices, encompass a vast information regarding the travel writer’s identity. Besides, the French school of Imagology especially Daniel-Henri Pageaux’s researches, is a valuable resource for analyzing such travelogues. For this purpose, Pietro Della valle’s Travels to Persia has been taken into account to examine his constructed identity as an Italian/Eueopean ‘other’. Out of his very minute descriptions he generates regarding political, social, and cultural conditions of Iran in comparison with his own country or The Ottoman Empire, his own identity is constructed.