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A mobilities approach to tourism from emerging world regions

Cohen, E and Cohen, SA (2015) A mobilities approach to tourism from emerging world regions Current Issues in Tourism, 18 (1). pp. 11-43.

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Increasing numbers of people from the emerging world regions, Asia, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East engage in tourism practices at domestic, intra-regional and long-haul international scales. In this article we deploy an innovative application of the mobilities approach, which we argue moves beyond the Eurocentrism implicit in modernist tourism studies, in a comparative analysis of tourism in and from these regions and those in the ‘West’. Our analysis opens up the systematic study of tourism in emerging world regions in terms of the mobilities paradigm, and concludes: one, travel had a multiplicity of origins in societies in the emerging regions, but most did not possess an equivalent emic term to ‘tourism.’ Two, tourism at domestic and intra-regional levels tends to be entangled with other discretionary mobilities, whereas the long-haul level is more differentiated. Three, the development of domestic discretionary travel in emerging regions can be represented by four overlapping ‘mobility constellations’. Four, there are significant historical differences between the regions in their long-haul mobility constellations, although their kinetic hierarchies are all still steep. Five, forms of movement and associated practices of discretionary travellers from the emerging regions and Western countries became increasingly similar under the impact of socio-technological, economic and cultural globalisation. Six, differences between the emerging regions, particularly Asia, and the West are most salient on the emic level of representations of international travel: the specific cultural motive forces for tourism do not centre on authenticity-seeking, but are instead bound up with prestige and markers of modernity.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > School of Hospitality and Tourism Management
Authors :
Date : 2015
Identification Number : 10.1080/13683500.2014.898617
Additional Information : This is an Author's Accepted Manuscript of an article published in 'Current Issues in Tourism', 18 (1), 24 March 2014 copyright Taylor & Francis, available online at:
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 17 Feb 2015 11:29
Last Modified : 24 Sep 2015 01:08

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