Navigation – Plan du site

Résumé

The author reflects on the historical context and intellectual and institutional foundations for his (1976) study The Tourist: A New Theory of the Leisure Class, especially its connections to classic social and critical theory, and its fit with post structuralism and deconstruction. The influence of Marx, Durkheim, C.S. Peirce, Barthes, Lévi-Strauss, Goffman and Derrida are discussed. The method of The Tourist is to follow tourists looking for clues about the shape and direction of human society today. Its approach is antithetical to the domain fragmentation occurring in the university whereby knowledge of society is broken up and distributed across disconnected fields such as women’s studies, ethnic studies, cultural studies, communication studies, et cetera. As tourists cross all these domains they open new pathways toward holistic understanding of emergent societal arrangements. The final section addresses misreadings of the author’s concepts of “alienated leisure” and “staged authenticity.”

Haut de page

Texte intégral

  • 1 An early sociological study of tourism, The Tourist was originally published by Schocken books and (...)
  • 2 Fifty years later, when Dennison Nash asked me to contribute to his volume on the sociological begi (...)

1Tourist studies today have set up shop in so many universities worldwide; have become the focus of so many journals and conferences; have attracted so many bright young minds, that it is difficult to recall a time when the study of tourism did not exist as a robust field of inquiry. Yet, that is the situation I faced in 1965 when I proposed to study international tourism as my Ph.D. dissertation topic2. My Cornell graduate committee rejected my proposal on the grounds that tourism did not exist as a field of study; that I would have to do my research and construct a field around it as I went. They told me they thought I was up to the task, but the process was too cumbersome for a Ph.D. dissertation, and would take at least ten years. They insisted that I finish my studies faster. “Do it as your tenure book,” they said.

2My academic preparation was evenly divided between sociology and anthropology. As an undergraduate I was strongly attracted to the classics: especially Durkheim, Weber, Simmel, Mauss, Malinowski, Redfield and Radcliffe-Brown. I did not discover Freud and Marx, the Frankfurt School, C.S. Peirce, Saussurian linguistics, Barthes, Sartre and Merleau-Ponty, until graduate school and post-graduate study. I loved reading books where the way in was difficult. The more difficult they were, the greater my satisfaction when I got my first grasp of them.

3Today the books I loved are called “theory.” But I did not read them as “theory” then or now. To me, they were all studies of something. They staked out interesting analytic territories and provided explanations of things that were going on in new domains: the mechanisms by which capitalism transfers wealth from the poor to the rich; the reasons why the suicide rate in upwardly and downwardly mobile populations is greater than the rate in class-bound populations; etcetera.

  • 3 I eventually did find enough to engage Foucault’s theories on two occasions. See MacCannell and Mac (...)

4My favorite authors often had to invent new language, concepts and conceptual definitions to describe their discoveries, but there was none of the kind of content-free, superfluous clever wordplay that is called “theory” today. I never had tolerance for academic make-work, or the notion that the ultimate goal of a professor is to publish. My goal has always been to solve problems and I want to be judged by the importance of the problem and the quality of my solutions. Publication has always been incidental for me. I find the notion absurd that someone might publish humanistic or social science “theory” as an end in itself. Theory worthy of the name is only a byproduct of the creation of new knowledge. In my judgment at the time, the only contemporary figures who measured up were Erving Goffman and Claude Lévi-Strauss. I found little in Foucault that could not already be found in Durkheim, Weber and Marx3. Immediately on completing my Ph.D. at Cornellin January, 1968, I left for Paris to sit in Lévi-Strauss’s course on “Myth” at the College de France. Later, while writing The Tourist, I re-connected with Goffman at the University of Pennsylvania. As an undergraduate, I sat in his “Introduction to Sociology” course at Berkeley. At Penn, I joined his graduate seminar, “Relations in Public” and we enjoyed free-wheeling conversations about the past and future of sociology and many other things.

5That is the bedrock beneath my intellectual foundations for writing The Tourist. It took almost exactly ten years just as predicted by my Cornell faculty.

1. Why the tourist?

6I chose The Tourist as my subject because the figure of the tourist seemed to me to be as good a cipher and key as any other for the global socio-historical epoch we are in. The tourist, I then thought and still think, is today’s analogue of the industrial worker of late 19th century sociology, a figure worthy of all the attention we might give it to understand what is going on around us. And I chose it especially because in 1965, it had not already been studied in any depth.

7As a result of the way I read the classics, I am intrigued and challenged by macro-social phenomena that occur on the largest scale and are widely deployed throughout cultures and societies, especially at the points where the macro touches us most intimately—macro/micro. The universal prohibition of incest and the individual’s relation to the means of production under capitalism are classic examples of this kind of macro/micro phenomenon. Socially structured face-to-face interaction would be a recently elaborated example, as would the proliferation of modern mythologies and their impact on individual and collective conscience. A close examination of tourism and sightseeing was perfectly suited to my curiosity and predilections.

2. Would it be possible to do a sociological study of tourism?

  • 4 In an early progress report on his theoretical effort, Parsons wrote: “. . . as for the building it (...)

8Not in any conventional sense. I knew from the start I could not approach tourists as some kind of bounded group. The standardized units of social analysis (classes, groups, institutions, communities, regions, etcetera) were conjured into existence by positing highly contingent boundaries separating rural from urban, men from women, black from white, parents from children, rich from poor, European from American, North from South (as economic development categories), first, second and third generation immigrants, etcetera ad nauseam, and treating the resulting groupings as if they were real. Talcott Parsons tried to fit these mainly fictitious entities together in the 1950s into a general theory of society he called “structural functionalism.” He often likened himself to a mason, mortaring together sociological categories as the structural building blocks of society, fitting them together with all the other building blocks to make a conceptual analogue of our social world, a “functional whole.”4 He failed.

9Nevertheless, universities in the United States followed a quasi-Parsonian framework setting up new departments, majors, minors, research centers, and graduate degree programs specializing in the study of hypostatic social units as “building blocks” of our current academic humanities and social sciences. Sociology, in the United States, and perhaps with a guilty conscience toward its European origins, was more than ready to outsource much of its work to new independent academic programs: e.g. women’s studies, cultural studies, ethnic studies, communications, visual studies, ad infinitum. No one seems to have seriously questioned the fragile and tentative basis of these categorical domains. Faculty and graduate students willingly accepted the notion that the boundary definitions around their programs are real and stable enough to provide unquestioned context for academic labor. Approval of a faculty line in Cultural Studies made cultural studies a real field.

10Academics trapped in these newly institutionalized domains can do worth while, albeit limited, research. These extra-disciplinary sub-fields, have discovered all sorts of difference and dynamism, shifting definitions, movements, transgressions, transactions, negotiations, and new kinds of human agency. But discovery required a devil’s bargain. Current academic work is predicated on an unspoken agreement that precludes serious and direct questioning of the shape and direction of society as a whole. This is only one of several ways that the University has disabled itself when it comes to understanding the social and human world in the 21st century. But it is the main way. Faculty in the new social sciences and humanities have closed their eyes to the questions that animated every sociological classic on which their work is ultimately based. They must willfully disregard the evident truth that if there is change going on within their domain, there must also be change going on in the entire society. They especially must shield themselves from ever knowing that macro-change at the societal level necessarily de-stabilizes the very existence of the domain they are working in, the one that is paying their salary.

11An underlying assumption of this work is that the structure of the unit of analysis sets the limits on the range of possible research results, much the way the rules of a game structures the plays of the game. (Some openly make use of a game analogy.) My work on tourism began with an opposing assumption: namely, that an outcome of the game might be a new, entirely different, game; that the stakes in a game might be the game itself. If there is a single lesson to be learned from the sociological classics, it is that in social life the game itself has always been the ultimate stake in the game. I wanted a method that would permit me to observe the birth of a new kind of society.

3. The actual work begins

  • 5 In the last several years there has appeared in the tourism research literature an unfortunate tend (...)

12I started by making a collection of things tourists go to see. I briefly entertained the notion of creating a naturalistic typology of tourist attractions and working my way back from there to varieties of tourist motivation and desire. Had I followed this strategy to its logical conclusion I would have simply repeated the errors of academic sociology and foisted them off onto the study of tourism5.

13Any typology requires a more or less comprehensive collection. I began to collect accounts of every imaginable type of attraction. Niagara, a waterfall, attracted tourists. So I collected visitor observations of Niagara and of other famous falls. These included entries in guidebooks, travel brochures, diary entries, fragments of essays by travel writers, incidental observations by politicians, social scientists, news reporters, others. In my file labeled “Waterfalls as attraction” I assembled accounts up to the point where they became redundant. And so I went through thousands of accounts of monuments, mountains, festivals, battlefields, churches, archaeological ruins, towers, articles of clothing (Marilyn Monroe’s “Happy Birthday Mr. President” cocktail dress, Napoleon’s hat) paintings (The Mona Lisa, Guernica), gardens, bridges, neighborhoods of the poor and the wealthy, sites of tragic events and miracles, etcetera. Some, by no means all, of these accounts are found on the pages of The Tourist.

14Eventually my archive overflowed an entire room of our apartment. It was growing increasingly evident that my dream of imposing on my collection some division into natural categories of attractions or of tourists was just that, a dream. There was nothing on earth not susceptible to becoming a tourist attraction. Everything has a very close relative that is already an attraction, even petrified dinosaur dung. Now I knew two things. First, most of the accounts I collected were not very different from one another; that few observers actually penetrated the symbolic that held them in its thrall. Second, the attractions, seen collectively as a function of tourist desire, were a realm of pure and unlimited possibility. Gazing at my collection, I concluded that tourist desire is universal and boundless, or as nearly universal and boundless as any human desire can be. Goffman told me I must never lose my archive. But several moves and one house fire reduced it to a few random scraps.

4. The French connection

15If any kind of object or event can become one, the question that remains is What exactly distinguishes the tourist attraction from the thousands of other similar things that do not attract tourists? To answer “fame” or “extraordinary-ness” is merely tautological. What made the objects and events in my files different from their unloved twins and other siblings was that they were socially marked as attractions. It was their symbolic representation, literally the clippings I collected and other similar labels, that separated these things from the myriad similar things that are not attractions. A “Monterey Cypress” tree that stood for many years on the central coast of California appeared in every guide, and there are thousands of postcard and other photographic views of it in circulation. Everyone who passed by had to stop and take yet another picture, often with members of their family in front of it. Very similar trees 300 meters away had no socio-symbolic representation and attracted little notice. There are several hundred thousand “selfie” type pictures posted on the Web of tourists at the Golden Gate Bridge. There are only several dozen similar pictures at the equally large and busy Oakland Bay Bridge two kilometers away.

16When I first had these thoughts, my mind flooded with memories of passages from Durkheim’s Elementary Forms of the Religious Life, e.g., “So we must refrain from regarding these symbols as simple artifices, as sorts of labels attached to representations already made, . . . they are integral to the representations.” (p. 263) Durkheim reinforced my primary goal, not just a study of tourism but a holistic account of the kind of society we now live in. Was it possible that the global system of attractions, their symbolic representations, and the gathering of tourists around them might constitute an analytic opening into our current socio-historical epoch? My data were clearly not containable within standard institutional, regional or national boundaries. The vast symbolism seemingly sloughed off by tourist attractions world-wide seemed to me to be the best possible mirror of the operations of modern consciousness or “world view.”

17The dissertation I did write at Cornell was a comparative study of the laws in the 48 continental United States. I wanted to know if discriminatory legislation (racially segregated National Guard, public housing, etcetera) had any impact on economic development of the states. I constructed measures of social structural differentiation that allowed me to explore the connections between very high levels of development and the persistence of exclusionary and discriminatory laws. The other students in my graduate program teasingly called me “differentiation man.” My first apprehension of my tourism data brought me back to the same dimension. How do moderns live under conditions where Society has become so huge and disconnected from their day-to-day existence, so complex and differentiated, that no one can really know their place in the totality? Is it possible that modern tourism is a massive collective effort directly to engage difference, or differentiation, itself? There was nothing in my data that suggested otherwise.

18But there was also nothing in the approach of mid-century Anglo-American sociology that gave me a method to understand the human being as something other than a member of some group, community, class, or tribe from which she derives an identity. My tourists were enthusiastically crossing every analytic and moral boundary, jumping from group to group and epoch to epoch, admiring the unique heritage and contribution of all the different peoples who had ever inhabited the face of the earth. If tourism is a positive way of coming to terms with the very complexity that bedevils modern life and incapacitates modern sociology, I needed a new approach.

19The intellectual setting I had thrown myself into at the time, Paris in the late 1960s, provided me with the conceptual and methodological moves I needed to advance my study of tourism. While I sat in Lévi-Strauss’s course on “Myth” at the Collège de France, Juliet Flower MacCannell took third year professor Jacques Derrida’s philosophy seminar at the Ecole Normale Supérieure. Juliet and the other American students in Derrida’s seminar reported to me daily on what he said: “there are no transcendental signifieds. There are only signifiers.” And, “there are no fixed meanings. Meaning is always deferred. There is only deferral or ‘differance.’” Of course I heard “difference,” and “differentiation.” Derrida also told his students that to understand the next turn in Western philosophy, they would have to know Saussurian linguistics, but even more important, the writings of the American philosopher, Charles S. Peirce. Saussure had begun the process of freeing the symbolic from the natural world. But it was Peirce’s semiotics that paved the way to an understanding of the symbolic as completely free of essentialism. Pierce had been briefly mentioned in my History of Science seminar at Cornell but I had not yet read a book by him. Juliet and I immediately wrote our friend Alan Nagel at Cornell asking him to check every Peirce book out of the graduate library, package them, and mail them to us in Paris. When the books arrived, I tore through them finding passages like this one:

  • 6 Buchler, 162.

[L]ogicality inexorably requires that our interests shall not be limited. They must not stop at our own fate but must embrace the whole community. This community, again, must not be limited, but must extend to all races of beings with whom we can come into immediate or mediate intellectual relation. It must reach, however vaguely, beyond this geological epoch, beyond all bounds6.

  • 7 Few of the extended reviews of The Tourist have dealt with it’s theoretical engagement with semioti (...)

20Peirce’s semiotic gave me the basic concepts I needed to build general models of tourist attractions and the dialogic structures of tourist encounters. But Lévi-Strauss and Barthes helped as well.7

  • 8 Lévi-Strauss, (1967a), pp. 47-8.
  • i

21On the first day I went to Lévi-Strauss’s course on “Myth” with low expectations. His words “travel and travelers are two things I loathe” still burned in my brain. He had already told me to my face that a structural study of the whole of modernity was impossible. I could recite from memory passages from his “Inaugural Lecture” on assuming the chair at the Collège de France8. “Pure anthropology,” he said, could only be the study of “primitive societies” whose “past is as old as the origin of the species.” “These societies seem to have elaborated or retained a particular wisdom which incites them to resist desperately any structural modifications which would afford history a point of entry into their lives.” (47-8.) I was a great admirer of his research reports like “Do Dual Organizations Exist” where he followed is own admonition to confine his analysis to the internal workings of a highly bounded group.i So, I held out little hope that he would provide me with a methodological move or a concept that might advance our understanding of a concrete Peircian Community Without Definite Limits.

  • i

22Was I surprised! Standing at the lectern was this dignified proponent of “pure anthropology,” an anthropology that focused on the elucidation, one-by-one, of the internal structures of primitive isolates. A subject he and I both knew would soon pass out of existence.iiBut what was he up to in 1968? He was bounding crazily from one Native American society to another, hop-skipping and jumping from the Bering Straits to Tierra del Fuego. He was following the movement of myths from one society to the next and analyzing their structural transformations as they were repurposed for local use. My sigh of relief was probably audible in the great lecture hall. Aha! If I wanted a clear precedent for doing mythic analyses of tourist attractions as points of repair in the modern consciousness, it was right here before me in the latest work of the contemporary thinker I wanted most to admire. In his handling of them, the proper domain of Native American myth, was a Community Without Definite Limits.

  • i

23Lévi-Strauss’s handling of his collection of myths gave me a methodological framework for working with my entire collection of attractions as texts. I could not approach my attractions analogically as he approaches his myths. But very nearby I found an adaptable method in Roland Barthes Mythologies, especially his still indispensible essay, “Myth Today.” My ultimate hope for The Tourist would be that it provide the initial conceptual framework for detailed symbolic studies of the attractions in the global system; the concrete ways the attractions reflect cosmopolitan morality, values, and human relationships.iiiMuch of this kind of work, i.e. decoding the mythic dimensions of the attractions, is now occurring in China and Japan. See, e.g., studies by Shinji Yamashita, Takayoshi Yamamura (in Seaton et al., eds.) and Hong-mei Zhao.

  • i

24I should have been aware of the post-structural turn Lévi-Strauss’s work had already taken before I went to his lectures in 1968. Le Cru et le Cuit (1964) had been published four years before. It appeared in English translation (The Raw and the Cooked, 1969) the following year in time for me to take it thoroughly into consideration as I continued working on The Tourist. Bear in mind that no one had yet bothered to give “post-structuralism,” or “deconstruction” their currently fashionable labels. All I had access to was the raw thought that gave rise to these movements. And frankly, I have never been able to identify with the way their later adherents assimilated the foundational work that I was fortunate enough to have witnessed first hand. My first grasp of deconstruction came not from books and articles but from conversations in cafés and in bed before going to sleep. I should have made some notes to this effect, but everything was still very much up in the air when I was writing the first drafts of The Tourist.iv

25Derrida’s Grammatology appeared in English translation the same year as The Tourist (1976), and his Writing and Difference came two years later (1978). I support the theoretical shift from structuralism to post-structuralism and wanted my study to reflect and represent the thought that was happening in the time and the place of its original conception. The Tourist contains sections and chapters on “difference” and “differentiation,” “structural spuriousness,” “the semiotics of attraction,” “staged authenticity,” “cultural production,” and “the Paris case.”

26My chapter on “Staged Authenticity” has occasioned the most response in the literature. Almost everyone, including Professors Ed Bruner and Erik Cohen have attributed to me an essentialist belief in the authenticity of tourist experiences when the opposite is clearly the case from the title to the final note. I have already tried several times to correct the misreadings of “staged authenticity.” See, for example, “Why it never really was about authenticity,” “Staged Authenticity Today,” and “Comment on Lau and Knudsen/Rickly-Boyd.”

27On this occasion I would like to address an important criticism of The Tourist that I have mainly left unanswered until now. I based the sightseeing drive on modern alienation and the weakening or dilution of intimate social bonds in modern life, bonds that might be experienced as “authentic.” The particular criticism that goes to the heart of the thesis of The Tourist is nicely summarized by Dennison Nash (2007, p. 249)

28MacCannell sees tourism as a ritual of modern peoples, in which they scour the world looking for some kind of authenticity, a quality which many think is lacking in modern social life; and in this intention they are aided by modern hosts who attempt to “stage” it for them . . . . This notion has been criticized by a number of scholars (Cohen 1988. 2004:2-5; McCabe 2002) for both theoretical and empirical inadequacies. . . . Cohen feels it is no longer applicable in a post-modern era where ‘the craving for enjoyment and fun become a culturally sufficient justification’ for touring.

29In The Tourist I made it abundantly clear that the modern “alienation” I wrote about is not a psychological concept and has nothing to do with any individual or personal feelings or emotions. I have always tried to let the tourists think and feel anything they might wish. What I have mainly learned from my critics is that the mere mention of “alienation” or “authenticity” causes them to take what is being said personally, even when they should know better. My concept of “alienated leisure” is openly derived from Marx’s concept of “alienated labor.” It does not take a virtuoso reader of Marx to know that even if a worker loves his work, his boss, and his co-workers, and looks forward to going to work every day, that does not make his labor any less alienated. In a strict sense, so long as the profits of his labor accrue not to the worker, but to the owner of the means of production, the worker’s labor is alienated. Probably all the more so, or at least pathetically so, if he experiences “joy in work.”

30The underlying question of alienated leisure is the same: what is the surplus value of leisure at the level of the entire society? If society evolves to the point where, from the perspective of its ordinary, everyday members, it appears unimaginably huge, ungovernable, disconnected, fragmented, what can be done to impose upon it some sense of order and meaningful connection? My argument at this point became dialectical which is probably why it throws so many readers off. I stated, rather too clearly I suspect, that the very fragmentation of society today, its disconnections and dislocations, have become primary resources for a new and modern kind of solidarity founded on resistance to the rule of alienation. However it may be experienced psychologically in the mind of the tourist, it is the structural motive to go on tour.

31In traditional communities the separation of truth from lies, the maintenance of a moral order, of a strong collective sense of right and wrong, good and bad, was necessarily felt at the individual level. Each individual assumed a share of responsibility for the smooth functioning of the totality. Today, traditional morality has become disconnected from the social totality. It may have become so disconnected that a bankrupt businessman, one who lies every time he speaks, who has a proven incapacity to enter into or sustain a stable marriage, would not even attempt to hide these foibles as he ascends to become “leader of the free world.”

32My central argument in The Tourist is we will never be able to correct for this state of affairs by trying to return to some kind of federation of traditions. Rather, the only correctives will be found in facing the social totality for what it is, digging in and discovering its symbolic secrets, embracing its positive dimensions and resisting its negatives.

  • i

33Sightseeing is by no means a perfect way of affirming a principled socio-logic under current macro-social conditions.v Nor is it the only way. Some moderns have figured out that the truth, and honorable interpersonal ties, may no longer be holding up the sky, but they continue to make a huge difference in the quality of their everyday lives and relations. There are myriad examples of heroic collective resistance to modern fragmentation and disconnection ranging from Doctors Without Borders to renewable energy and other ecologically concerned movements. Sightseeing remains the largest and most sustainably funded response to the rule of differentiation. It is the only social activity that can be scaled to the totality and has the capacity to turn the totality inside-out.

Conclusion

34I decided not to burden my book with this kind of meta-theoretical musing. I assumed that the meta-critique would soon enough be brought out in discussion and reviews. Of course I was very wrong about this. After the original publication of The Tourist, in the United States, all discussion of our current socio-historical epoch was emphatically swept under the sociological rug. I have been very fortunate that the growth of tourism studies as an applied field along with the growth of tourism itself, has sustained the relevance of The Tourist. After 1976, The Tourist is the only English language book on the shelf of sociological studies of the whole of society—no more American Dilemmas; no more Organization Man; no more The Social System; no more White Collar; no more One Dimensional Man; not even a Lonely Crowd.

Haut de page

Bibliographie

Barthes R., 1972, Mythologies, New York, Hill and Wang.

Buchler J. (ed.), 1955, The Philosophical Writings of Peirce, New York, Dover.

Bruner E., 2005, Culture on Tour: Ethnographies of travel, Chicago, University of Chicago Press.

Cohen E., 1988, “Traditions in the Qualitative Sociology of Tourism,” Annals of Tourism Research, 15, 29-46.

Derrida J., 1976, Of Grammatology, Baltimore, Johns Hopkins University Press.

Derrida J., 1978, Writing and Difference, Chicago, University of Chicago Press.

Durkheim E., 1915, The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life, New York, The Free Press.

Graburn N. (ed.), 1976, Ethnic and Tourist Arts: Cultural Expressions from the Fourth World, Berkeley, University of California Press.

Kirshenblatt-Gimblett B., 1998, Destination Culture: Tourism, Museums, and Heritage, Berkeley, University of California Press.

Lévi-Strauss C., 1964, Le Cru et le Cruit, Paris, Plon.

Lévi-Strauss C., 1967a, The Scope of Anthropology, London, Cape.

Lévi-Strauss C., Structural Anthropology (Garden City, 1967b)

Lévi-Strauss C., 1969, The Raw and the Cooked—Introduction to a Science of Mythology, I, New York, Harper and Row.

MacCannell D., MacCannell J-F., 1982, The Time of the Sign: A Semiotic Interpretation of Modern Culture, Bloomington: Indiana University Press.

MacCannell D., MacCannell J-F., 1993, “Violence, Power, Pleasure: A Revisionist Reading of Foucault from the Victim Perspective,” in Ramazanoglu C. (ed.), Up Against Foucault, London, Routledge.

MacCannell D., 2001, “Tourist Agency”, Tourist Studies, vol. 1, n. 1, 23-37.

MacCannell D., 2007, “Anthropology for All the Wrong Reasons,” in Dennison N. (ed.), The Study of Tourism: Anthropological and Sociological Beginnings, Amsterdam, Elsevier.

MacCannell D., 2008, “Why it Never Really was About Authenticity,Society, vol. 45, n.4, 334-337. <http://www.springerlink.com/content/103513/>Society>

MacCannell D., 2011, The Ethics of Sightseeing, Berkeley, University of California Press.

MacCannell D., 2014, “Comment on Lau and Knudsen / Rickly-Boyd”, Annals of Tourism Research, 44, 283-87.

McCabe S., 2002, “The Tourist Experience and Everyday Life,” in Dann, G. (ed.) The Tourist as a Metaphor of the Social World, Oxon, CABI Publishing, 61-76.

Marcuse H., 1964, One-Dimensional Man: studies in ideology of advanced industrial society, London, Routledge.

Mills, C. Wright, 1951, White Collar: The American Middle Classes, Oxford University Press.

Myrdal G., 1944, An American Dilemma, New York, Harper and Brothers.

Oakes T., 2005, “Tourism and the Modern Subject: Placing the Encounter between Tourist and Other,” in Carter C., Lew A. (eds.), Seductions of Place: Geographical Perspectives on Globalization and Touristed Landscapes, London, Routledge.

Oakes T., 2006, “Get Real! On Being Yourself and Being a Tourist,” in Minca C., Oakes T. (eds.), Travels in Paradox: Remapping Tourism, Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield.

Parsons T., 1950, “The Prospects of Sociological Theory,” American Sociological Review, vol. 15, n.1 (February,), 3-16.

Parsons T., 1951, The Social System, Glencoe, The Free Press.

Riesman D. et al., 1950, The Lonely Crowd, New York, Anchor Doubleday.

Sugawa A., Seaton P. A., Yamamura T., Jang K. (eds.), 2017, Contents Tourism in Japan: Pilgrimages to ‘Sacred Sites’ of Popular Culture, Amherst: Cambria Press, forthcoming.

Van den Abbeele G., 1980, “The Tourist as Theorist,” Diacritics, vol. 10 (December), 2-18.

Whyte W., 1956, The Organization Man, New York, Simon and Schuster.

Yamashita S., 2003, Bali and Beyond, New York, Berghahn Books.

Zhao, H-M., Pei-hai D., 2012, “Authenticity—A Hot Spot in Tourism Study,” Tourism Tribune, vol. 27, n. 5.

Haut de page

Notes

1 An early sociological study of tourism, The Tourist was originally published by Schocken books and has been kept continuously in print by Schocken, MacMillan, Random House, Pantheon and most recently the University of California Press. Its first translation was into Korean and subsequently into Italian, Spanish, Polish, Mandarin, Japanese, Serbo-Croatian, Greek, Russian. There is a Persian translation in progress.

2 Fifty years later, when Dennison Nash asked me to contribute to his volume on the sociological beginnings of the study of tourism, I found and published my original Cornell dissertation proposal. See MacCannell, 2007 pp. 142-46.

3 I eventually did find enough to engage Foucault’s theories on two occasions. See MacCannell and MacCannell, 1993 and MacCannell, 2001.

4 In an early progress report on his theoretical effort, Parsons wrote: “. . . as for the building itself, a post here and there, and a few courses of bricks at the corners are all that is yet visible above the ground. After all, . . . one and a half generations, in the perspective of the development of a science is a very short time.” (Parsons, 1950 p. 4.)

5 In the last several years there has appeared in the tourism research literature an unfortunate tendency to reproduce the incapacity of the older social sciences, namely, a division of tourists into specialized groups: extreme tourists, “travelers,” eco-tourists, sex tourists, and the like. Today, a researcher might try to establish herself as a leading expert in death tourism, or dark tourism, perhaps calling it “thanotourism,” e.g. Any advantage that results from this strategy is gained at the expense of the field as a whole. No human being has ever been just one of these artificial “types” of tourist.

6 Buchler, 162.

7 Few of the extended reviews of The Tourist have dealt with it’s theoretical engagement with semiotics and the implications of that engagement for understanding intersubjectivity and dialogue. Notable exceptions would be Van den Abbeele (1980) and Oakes (2005 and 2006)

8 Lévi-Strauss, (1967a), pp. 47-8.

Haut de page

Note de fin

i

Lévi-Strauss, (1967b), pp 128-160.

ii

Tourism research in the field of anthropology in the United States has advanced much further than in sociology. This, I think, is partly because the original anthropological subject, primitive culture, was about to disappear from the face of the earth due, in some measure, to the impact of global tourism. To their advantage, U.S. anthropologists have tended to treat tourism as systemic question rather than episodically. See, e.g., studies by Ed Bruner, Nelson Graburn, and Barbara Kirshenblatt-Gimblett.

iii

While this work is necessarily left undone to be continued by others, I have started it with observations of work displays in Paris, the Statue of Liberty, the Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial in Washington, D.C., the Cornish Coast, the town of Locke, California, Disneyland, Disney’s town of Celebration in Florida, Freud’s House in London, Yosemite, the Guggenheim in Bilbao, and Piranesi’s lithographs.

iv

Juliet and I eventually tried to fill in this gap by sharing what we learned in our Paris years in our book The Time of the Sign.

v

I have tried to map both its positive and negative potential in my Ethics of Sightseeing.

Haut de page

Pour citer cet article

Référence électronique

Dean MacCannell, « The Making of The Tourist », Via [En ligne], 13 | 2018, mis en ligne le 01 septembre 2018, consulté le 11 décembre 2018. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/viatourism/2239 ; DOI : 10.4000/viatourism.2239

Haut de page

Auteur

Dean MacCannell

University of California at Davis

Articles du même auteur

Haut de page

Droits d’auteur

Licence Creative Commons
Via Tourism Review est mis à disposition selon les termes de la Licence Creative Commons Attribution - Pas d'Utilisation Commerciale - Pas de Modification 4.0 International.

Haut de page
  • OpenEdition Journals