Chapter

Tourist/Other and the Unconscious

Dean MacCannell

in The Ethics of Sightseeing

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780520257825
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520948655 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520257825.003.0001
Tourist/Other and the Unconscious

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The central argument here is that tourism contains keys to understanding recent changes in the ways one frames their humanity, and crucial to understanding tourism are some delicate, decidedly noneconomic relations which are gathered under the term “the ethics of sightseeing.” This chapter shows that beneath every difference in age, gender, ethnicity, sexual preference, and nationality, there are subjective kernels insulated from the influences of demographics. It also investigates the differences in the ways tourists see and experience attractions independent of how much or little wealth they possess, independent of their ethnic background, or their gender. The chapter specifically defines the act of sightseeing as effort based on the desire to connect ethically to someone or something “other” as represented by or embodied in an attraction. Authenticity, as a substitute for ethics, can be regarded with the suspicion that it is either intentionally or unwittingly unethical. Sightseeing can shift the foundations of existence.

Keywords: tourism; humanity; authenticity; sightseeing; ethics; other; gender; ethnicity; sexual preference

Chapter.  4043 words. 

Subjects: Anthropology

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