Staged Authenticity Today

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:
Staged Authenticity Today

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This chapter reviews the staged authenticity in cultural arrangements beyond tourism and the implications of this relocation, also exploring the fragile membrane guarding the back as described by Erving Goffman, some consequences of its violation by tourists, and the social and human impacts of its putative removal across the board. Goffman was meticulous in explaining how much of humanity hangs on the separation of front and back. An examination of the tourist gaze from the double perspective of Goffman/Michel Foucault reveals emergent paranoid structures at the level of society, or at least the so-called postmodern variants of society. Jeremy Bentham believed that the design of the prison should guarantee visibility of the whole of the prison to the whole of the outside world. It is noted that prisons are actually more crowded, violent, and disease ridden than they have ever been.

Keywords: staged authenticity; tourism; Erving Goffman; tourist gaze; humanity; Michel Foucault; prison; Jeremy Bentham

Chapter.  8381 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Anthropology

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