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Religious Tourism

Analytical Routes through Multiple Meanings

Emerson Giumbelli

Translator : Jeffrey Hoff

detailed below. For now, it is sufficient to say that it is presented as a ‘religious tourism’ project, and one of its main supporters is a local association of ‘pilgrims’. ‘Religious tourism’ is a syntagma that may sound like a contradiction in terms—if it

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Smita Yadav

Sites of pilgrimage and heritage tourism are often sites of social inequality and volatility that are impaired by hostilities between historical, ethnic, and competing religious discourses of morality, personhood, and culture, as well as between imaginaries of nationalism and citizenship. Often these pilgrim sites are much older in national and global history than the actual sovereign nation-state in which they are located. Pertinent issues to do with finance—such as regimes of taxation, livelihoods, and the wealth of regional and national economies—underscore these sites of worship. The articles in this special issue engage with prolix travel arrangement, accommodation, and other aspects of heritage tourism in order to understand how intangible aspects of such tourism proceed. But they also relate back to when and how these modern infrastructures transformed the pilgrimage and explore what the emerging discourses and practices were that gave newer meanings to neoliberal pilgrimages. The different case studies presented in this issue analyze the impact of these journeys on the pilgrims’ own subjectivities—especially with regard to the holy sites being situated in their imaginations of historical continuity and discontinuity and with regard to their transformative experiences of worship—using both modern and traditional infrastructures.

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Czech Balneotherapy

Border Medicine and Health Tourism

Amy Speier

This essay exemplifies a particular approach to the field of health tourism, whereby the anthropology of tourism and medical anthropology can be used in conjunction. The serious business of healing is not usually associated with the pleasures of relaxation; however, Czech spas have historically been sites of both healing and leisure for visitors. Building on the suggestion of Veijola and Jokinen (1994), the body of the tourist is made the centre of this study. The bodies of patient-tourists at Czech health spas undergo various healing regimens, and their bodies signify a negotiation of national and cultural identities. Just as Bunzl (2000) considers bodies as constituting European cultural landscapes, this essay considers the ways in which German patient bodies at Czech health spas constitute a changing national, political and cultural relationship at a 'border' of Europe.

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Tourism and the revolutionary new man

The specter of jineterismo in late 'special period' Cuba

Mette Louise Berg

Cuba's economic restructuring in the past decade has involved the country's reinsertion into the global tourist market. One of the undesired consequences of the new tourism based economy has been the phenomenon of jineterismo, literally horseback riding, but used to indicate hustling or prostitution. Prostitution is associated with the pre-revolution era and is therefore a sensitive issue for the socialist government. At the same time, sex tourism has become an important source of hard currency income. This article proposes to see jineterismo as a complex social phenomenon that brings issues of race, class, gender and nation into play, ultimately challenging the revolutionary narrative of social and racial equality.

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Mark C. J. Stoddart and Paula Graham

Since the 1992 cod fishing moratorium, the province of Newfoundland and Labrador has redefined social-environmental relationships with coastal landscapes in pursuit of tourism development. We explore how coastal landscapes are defi ned for tourists through traditional and digital media produced by Newfoundland-based tourism operators and the provincial government. We examine how these discourses are then translated by "outsider" mass media in Canada, the US, and the UK, thereby connecting local environments to global flows of tourism. To understand this process of translation and circulation we analyze television ads, websites, and newspaper articles. Additional insight is provided through interviews with tourism operators and promoters about their media work. Drawing on a co-constructionist approach and tourism mobilities literature, we argue that the post-moratorium shift toward tourism has resulted in the packaging and insertion of Newfoundland landscapes into global tourist/travel discourses in multiple ways that depend on medium of circulation and target audience.

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Of Golden Anniversaries and Bicentennials

The Convergence of Memory, Tourism and National History in Ghana

Cheryl Finley

The year 2007 marks the fiftieth anniversary of Ghana and the two hundredth anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade. The Ghana Ministry of Tourism and Diasporan Affairs is planning the Joseph Project, a roots tourism initiative, aimed at ‘welcoming home’ its African diaspora. The historic slave forts and castles on Ghana’s coast are important sites for diasporic roots tourists, who also maintain symbolic links to Ghana’s independence movement through the history of Pan-Africanism. The Joseph Project uniquely includes a programme of national healing and atonement for African complicity in the slave trade and aims to remap national memory through tourism, education and the establishment of new museums, monuments and rituals.

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Tourism for Peace?

Reflections on a Village Tourism Project in Cyprus

Julie Scott

On 1 May 2004, the Republic of Cyprus entered the European Union, unaccompanied by the Turkish-Cypriot population in the northern third of the island. The Green Line - the militarized border marking the cessation of hostilities in 1974 - now defines the outer edge of the European Union, creating a fluid and uncertain borderland which has become the focus for ongoing attempts to construct both the new Cyprus and the new Europe. Tourism has a central and contradictory role to play in these processes. It offers an avenue for stimulating economic activity and raising income levels in the Turkish-Cypriot north, and presents an opportunity to develop complementary tourism products north and south which could widen the appeal of the island as a whole and promote collaborative ventures between Greek- and Turkish-Cypriots. On the other hand, such developments face strong resistance from sections of the population north and south, who fear they will lead either to the legitimation and tacit recognition of the Turkish-Cypriot state in the north, or to a return to relations characterized by Greek-Cypriot dominance and Turkish-Cypriot dependence. The paper reflects on the author's involvement in a village tourism development project in Cyprus in 2005-2006 in order to explore what an anthropological approach to the use of tourism for political ends can tell us about conflict, and when, and under what conditions, tourism might be a force for peace and reconciliation.

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Pilgrimage to the Playas

Surf Tourism in Costa Rica

Stefan Michael Krause

Surf tourism is a largely ignored mode of touristic behaviour in the academy. This investigation adds to a very limited body of work by providing explorations of the significance of surf tourism for surfers and by bringing forward data and observations of the impacts surf tourism has had on Playas Jacó and Hermosa, Costa Rica. Interview, statistical and observation data are used here to argue that: a surfer habitus creates dispositions for many surfers to travel to exotic coastal destinations on the periphery; surf trips to Costa Rica in many ways are experientially similar to pilgrimages; and that surf tourism can be seen to be directly and indirectly associated with many economic, environmental and socio-cultural costs and benefits to the local communities under study. Considering the applied dimension of surf tourism it is argued that surfers may indirectly set in motion a process of development and foreign investment into areas that are ill prepared for large numbers of visitors.

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Tourism and HIV

Involving Women in the Design of Educational Materials in Rural Costa Rica

Nancy Romero-Daza, Mackenzie Tewell, David Himmelgreen, Oriana Ramirez-Rubio and Elsa Batres-Boni

This article describes the involvement of women from rural Costa Rica, where tourism is predominant, in the creation of HIV/AIDS awareness materials that are appropriate for families and peers. The project was conducted in four towns in the Monteverde Zone, a region that has experienced a transition from an economy based on agriculture and dairy farming, to one dependent on tourism. Informed by previous research that shows the signi ficant impact of tourism on the economic and social landscape of the zone, this project responded to local residents' desire for participatory approaches to raise awareness about the potential spread of HIV/AIDS in their communities.

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Valerio Simoni

Building on current anthropological literature on intimacy, this article focuses on the way intimate relations mediate different narratives and experiences of belonging. It explores conflicting interpretations of intimacy as they emerge in Cuban tourism and migration and enable or obstruct different allegiances. Based on ethnographic fieldwork among Cubans and tourists in Cuba, and among Cuban migrants in the city of Barcelona (Spain), the article examines the role of intimate relationships in reasserting or transforming lines of commonality and separation between and among Cubans and non-Cubans. Globalized ideals of 'true' intimacy, and their 'fake' or instrumental counterparts, appear as the two main frames of legibility that people deployed to evaluate relationships with friends, lovers and family. We see the competing demands and possibilities to which these interpretative frames responded, and their implications.