It has become a Structuralist truism in the social sciences to state that individuals define themselves by what they are not. It has equally become evident that travel—and particularly the voluntary, temporary, and perspectival type that we call tourism—is predicated on interaction with the Other. Travelogues are particularly salient “social facts” in this regard, for they both index such processes of identity formation, as well as contribute to them. Two edited volumes, Rolf-Hagen Schulz-Forberg's Unraveling Civilisation: European Travel and Travel Writing (2005) and John Zilcosky's Writing Travel: The Poetics and Politics of the Modern Journey (2008) provide compelling examples of how the multifarious and complementary processes of travel and travel writing not only index, but construct, European identity.
Michael A. Di Giovine
Alienation and the American Scene in George William Curtis’s Lotus-Eating: A Summer Book
George William Curtis was a popular travel essayist and lecturer during the mid-nineteenth century, but his work has seen limited critical attention. This article examines Curtis’s 1852 book Lotus-Eating, an account of his summer trip visiting numerous tourist destinations throughout New York and New England. Situating Curtis’s narrative against the literary nationalism of his contemporaries, the article examines how Curtis’s prior four-year tour of Europe intrudes upon his experiences of the American scene, resulting in a sense of alienation and melancholic yearning for Europe. Curtis’s text engages central questions of national identity as it intersects with the emergence of nature tourism, but contrary to the dominant rhetoric of his time, during his tour Curtis articulates not a triumphal belief in American manifest destiny but a mournful nostalgia for the scenes and sensations of Europe.
(Dis)uniting the Kingdom on Holiday
This article is concerned with social constructions of identity as they are manifest in the charter tourism resorts of Magaluf and Palmanova on the Mediterranean island of Mallorca. Based on ethnographic fieldwork involving periods of participant observation, the article highlights the ways in which mediators of tourists’ experiences feed into and off ideas of national identity and how these are practiced, consumed, and performed as an effervescent Britishness. At the same time, the article explores the ways in which this Britishness is informed by regional identities and differences linked to senses of self. The article highlights issues relating to social cohesion at a broad level in society, which has implications for inclusivity at a time when, post-Brexit referendum, these issues appear ever more urgent.
Problems and Prospects
Irina N. Bilichenko
National Parks and Nature Reserves serve as key link in the formation of regional and nationwide ecological networks and play a crucial role in the conservation of biological and landscape diversity in Russia. Owing to conflicts over resource use, there is a range of problems in the functioning of the parks as exemplified in Tunka National Park, located near Lake Baikal. Fires, illegal logging and development, hunting and fishing without license, so-called wild tourism, and other types of violations are frequent in the park. The development of ecological tourism is an important prospect for the region.
This article examines the impact of art, performance, and technology on the global transformation of heritage tourism in recent years. Thanks to a series of case studies focusing on sites of memory deemed important to diasporic Africans, this article shows how art, performance, and technology are central to identity formation through an examination of mnemonic aesthetics and practices. Recent changes in heritage tourism have given rise to the establishment of categories such as “tangible“ and “intangible“ heritage as well as the construction of museums, the implementation of walking tours or the promotion of reenactments and ritual performances alongside environmental, volunteer, and virtual tourism. But how do tourists' interpretations of historic sites of memory change when various economic, political, social, and cultural factors converge globally? People seek experiences and outlets that could enable them to cling to those things that are familiar to them, while enabling them to identify with like communities in the midst of ground-shaking social, technological, economic, and political changes. Heritage tourism is one of those social practices that produces a sense of centeredness through a complex negotiation and presentation of memory, art, and performance.
Gazing Across Borders
Geographical, political, and historical contexts foreground the relationship between Americans of Mexican heritage and Mexican citizens. Contemporary US struggles over Mexican immigration and the focus on border studies also mark the significance of this relationship. This article analyzes chicano author Gary Keller's short story, "The Raza Who Scored Big in Anáhuac," with a specific focus on this crucial relationship. Employing the work of John Urry and others, this article takes a critical look at the mechanism of the 'gaze' and the way that it functions in heritage tourism. In doing so, it calls into question the presumed innocence of tourism and its constant companion, photography - an extension of the 'gaze.' Moving beyond the protagonist's illusion of the potential for a cultural connection across borders, this article culminates in an analysis of class, the final denominator between the Mexican American and the mexicano.
Preserving the Cultural Heritage of Oak Ridge, Tennessee
Nuclear tourism is rapidly becoming a popular industry that attracts a diverse international audience with interests in history, militarism, and anti-war activism. In some sites, nuclear tourism emphasizes the devastation of the nuclear attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, while, at others, it draws on the past to present a future of environmental stewardship, technological achievement and scientific mastery of the earth's energy. In so doing, nuclear tourism becomes a well crafted strategy to stimulate sentiments of nationalism and civic pride, while authenticating a particular perspective of history, science and identity. This article discusses efforts to use cultural heritage of the Manhattan Project both as a marketing strategy to bring tourist dollars to the city of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and as a way to celebrate the community's past as a 'Secret City' and its central role in the development of the atomic bomb. This construction of cultural heritage, however, may disregard cultural rights in respect to environmental justice, health and human rights, and serve to authenticate the history of the atomic bomb as having a single moral imperative, divorced from the international arena in which nuclear science is currently being developed and debated.
The Bombing of Kuta and the Recovery of the Balinese Tourist Identity
Clare B. Fischer
The 2002 bombing of the tourist nightclubs in Bali created multiple disturbances: it exposed the history of violence, destabilized the tourism economy and prompted a public debate about the comparative virtues of a revitalized tourism industry. Two televised commemorative ceremonies were performed to restore local relations and the global memory of Bali as a peaceful, tropical paradise: the cleansing ceremony and the first anniversary ceremony. Rather than promoting healing, these rituals further disclosed and exacerbated complex tensions within the Balinese society and its tourism industry.
Representing the Self, “the Other,“ and Rival Empires in the English and French Illustrated Press, 1880-1905
H. Hazel Hahn
The English and French illustrated press between 1880 and 1905 depicted Europeans as superior to non-Europeans and rarely questioned the colonizing right of Europeans. The illustrated press, such as news magazines The Illustrated London News, The Graphic, and L'Illustration, as well as the newspaper Le Petit Journal, was consumed by colonial news, reported as a series of crises, battles, and frontier troubles, and represented colonial officers and soldiers as heroes. However, a series of imperial rivalries increasingly undermined any collective “European“ understanding of the imperial mission. By implicitly and explicitly questioning and criticizing other empires' motives and capacity for colonization, the press came to portray colonization as a power dynamic. Heroism was increasingly tied to nationalism rather than to broader moral principles. The rhetoric and imagery of imperialism were thus fraught with paradoxes and double standards. The press coverage also reveals close links between war and tourism imaginaries.
“Savagery” and “Civilization” in the Australian Interwar Imaginary
Australian travel writing of the interwar period expanded with the growth of tourism in the Pacific Islands and the development of publishing and literacy at home. This article focuses on how the Australian middlebrow imagination was shaped by the diverse travel accounts of Australian tourists, adventurers, executives, scientists, officials, and missionaries writing at this time. Many of their texts borrowed and blended multiple discourses, simultaneously promoting the islands as educational and exotic, and appealing to an Australian middlebrow readership. In this article I argue that not only was travel writing middlebrow in its content and style, but the islands themselves were a particularly middlebrow setting. This is evident in representations of the islander “savage” in the region of Melanesia, a prevalent theme in Australian travelogues. I argue that this middlebrow literature was characterized by ambivalent and often contradictory ideas about the civilized “self” and the savage “other.”