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 Meet the Editors

Bertram Gordon

Bertram M. (Bert) Gordon is Professor Emeritus of History at Mills College. His most recent work focuses on the interrelationships between war and the growing field of tourism studies, joining two areas that have until now been approached separately with little attempt to explore their linkages. In War Tourism: Second World War France from Defeat and Occupation to the Creation of Heritage (Cornell University Press, 2018), he shows how tourism bestowed meaning upon wartime events, helping contemporary and retrospective visitors contextualize their experiences of the war into pre-existing modes of understanding gained earlier in peacetime.


War Tourism also addresses the power relationships inherent in tourism, as in Hitler’s boastful tour of Paris after the German defeat of France in June 1940. “Touring the Field: The Infrastructure of Tourism History Scholarship," his article in the Journal of Tourism History (September 2015), surveys the development of academic tourism studies, reflecting the exponential growth of the industry, by some measures now the largest single economic sector in the world. Focusing on war and tourism in France, his recent articles include “The Musée de la Grande Guerre du Pays de Meaux - A Simulacrum of the 1914-1918 War?” The Journal of Tourism and Cultural Change, (2019), and “Tourism and Erotic Imaginaries in Wartime Paris: French and Germans during the Occupation, 1940-1944,” Via, 11-12 | 2017 (2018). In “Rebonds: Pourquoi les Américains adorent le D-Day,” published in the French newspaper Libération (8 June 2009), he analyzes American tourism to the landing sites in Normandy and the D-Day commemorations that brought President Obama there that year.


In addition to his work on war and tourism, he has written on tourism history in general, most recently in the “Introduction” to Franklina C. Gray: The Grand Tour, the journal of a young woman from California who traveled through Europe and the Middle East in the 1870s, published by the Camron-Stanford Victorian House Museum in Oakland (2019). He is the author of Collaborationism in France during the Second World War (1980), based in part on interviews with former French supporters of Nazi Germany, and editor of The Historical Dictionary of World War II France (1998). The co-editor with Erica J. Peters of “Food and France: What Food Studies Can Teach Us about History,” French Historical Studies (2015), he has written on the history of chocolate, California Cuisine, the 1968 revolts in France, and Vichy as a spa town.

On the Editorial Board of the Journal of Tourism History, he also serves as General Secretary of the International Commission for the History of Travel and Tourism, is a core member of the Tourism Studies Working Group at the University of California, Berkeley, and with Shelley Baranowski has co-edited H-Travel since its inception in 2003. He has taught courses on tourism and gender history and cuisine history at Mills College, where he continues to teach as Emeritus, as well as the Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes at Santa Clara University and the University of California, Berkeley.


Shelley Baranowski

Shelley Baranowski, who has served as co-editor of H-Travel with Bertram Gordon since 2003, is Distinguished Professor of History Emerita at the University of Akron.  She is a specialist in modern Germany, focusing in particular on the Weimar and Nazi periods. She is the author of four books, The Confessing Church, Conservative Elites and the Nazi State (1986), The Sanctity of Rural Life: Nobility, Protestantism, and Nazism in Weimar Prussia (1995), Nazi Empire: German Colonialism and Imperialism from Bismarck to Hitler (2011), and a book of particular relevance to H-Travel, Strength through Joy: Consumerism and Mass Tourism in the Third Reich (2004).  The latter book assesses the contributions of the Nazi tourism organization, Strength through Joy (Kraft durch Freude) to building and sustaining popular support for the regime.


Baranowski also has written several articles on Nazi tourism: ”Selling the Racial Community: Kraft durch Freude and Consumption in the Third Reich.  In Selling Modernity: Advertising in Twentieth-Century Germany.  Eds. Pamela E. Swett, Jonathan Wiesen, and Jonathan Zatlin.  Durham: Duke University Press, 2007: 127-150; “Volksgemeinschaft and the Family Vacation: The Strength through Joy Resort at Prora,” in a special issue of German History, “ Modernity Begins At Home: Consumption,Technology, and Modernity,” 25, no. 4 (2007): 539-59; “An Alternative to Everyday Life? The Politics of Leisure and Tourism,” Journal of Contemporary European History, 12 (2003): 561-72 (review article); “Visiting the Sites of Nazism:  Official and “Wild” Memories,” (review article) H-German, September 2006; “Tourism and Modernity,” in Construction of a Tourist Industry in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries: International Perspectives/Construction d’une industrie touristique au 19ème et 20ème siècles. Perspectives internationals. Ed. Laurent Tissot.  Neuchâtel: Alphil, 2003, and “Radical Nationalism in an International Context: Strength through Joy and the Paradoxes of Nazi Tourism,” in Histories of Tourism: Representation, Identity and Conflict, Ed. John K. Walton.  Clevedon, Buffalo, Ontario: Channel View Publications, 2005: 125-43.  Translated as “Nacionalismo Radical en un Contexto Internacional: “Fuerza por la Alegría” y las Paradojas del Tourismo Nazi,Historia Social, no. 52 (2005): 93-108.  She is currently working on a chapter on authoritarian tourism for The Oxford History of Tourism.


In addition to being co-editor of H-Travel, Baranowski is on the editorial board of the Journal of Tourism History, and has been a board member of the International Commission on the History of Travel and Tourism.

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