Click the star to add/remove an item to/from your individual schedule.
You need to be logged in to avail of this functionality.

Accepted Paper:

Cosmopolitan savages: the challenging art of selling African culture to tourists  
Vanessa Wijngaarden (University of Johannesburg)

Paper long abstract:

African cultural tourism is expanding, thriving on the idea that this is the moment to explore the last people untouched by civilization. At the same time, globalization has given indigenous peoples worldwide a growing opportunity to take the exploitation of the image that exists of them into their own hands. Regarded as ultimate 'noble savages' since colonial times, Maasai of the Mara area have become quite successful. When tourists visit, they hide their mobile phones between folds of their traditional dress, and stage 'authentic' performances as advertised on their websites. Other ethnic groups, as Taita living near Tsavo, have not been able to fit themselves into the historical and current imaginations which seem necessary to make African people into marketable objects of tourism. Comparing both Kenyan cases, I aim to show what effects tourism related commodifications and transactions have upon local people's conceptualizations of their culture and images of themselves.

Panel W095
Commodification of indigenous cultures
  Session 1