Looking Through the Landscape

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:
Looking Through the Landscape

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Landscapes seen as “picturesque” are said to engender feelings of peaceful calm or soothing solace. The role of landscape in the mediation of tourist/other is described. Picturesque landscapes are disproportionately found in “minor” places, that is, places forgotten or bypassed by big capital. Minor places now serve as “roots service stops” for postmodernites. The potential in the landscape is an inexhaustible source of inspiration for immigrants, nomads, refugees, the uprooted, and, perhaps someday, for tourists. The Cornish landscape art and the historical experience of mortal risk seem to exist as two parallel universes overlaid but closed to each other. Alfred Wallis transformed landscape and the memories it contains into place, a representational strategy Cornwall and its memories strongly resist. The tourist landscape is the teleotype of easily taken-for-granted agreement on everything thought to be “good” in nature and in human thought and action.

Keywords: tourist landscape; picturesque; Cornish landscape art; Alfred Wallis; Cornwall

Chapter.  8494 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Anthropology

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