Module Convenor: Dr Jonathan Skinner
Malcolm Crick famously calls tourists 'the sun-tanned destroyers of culture'. This module will look at these tourists, their influences and their effects. From an anthropological perspective we will explore the rise of this powerful 'new leisure class' and their 'modern' quest -- for the 'authentic', for the real thing, for the handmade in an increasingly plastic world. Through a series of lectures, discussions and film showings, questions such as the following will be raised: What makes and motivates a tourist? What are the relationships between local 'hosts' and tourist 'guests'? What are the similarities and differences between tourism and anthropology, travel writing and ethnography? Is tourism an agent of social change? This module will address these important questions, grounding answers and theoretical issues with reference to anthropological theory and tourism case studies. Topics covered will include the following: the social development of leisure, travel and tourism; anthropological approaches to tourism; liminality, tourist behaviour and commodity fetishism; tourism development and its impact; staged authenticity and heritage tourism; modern and postmodern tourism; semiotics and dark tourism; hosts, guests and brokers; and travel writing, souvenirs and postcards.