What if we try working critically both with, and against the grain of universal stories? Intercultural 74 Packing the Travel Bag communication, for our tourists, was not a matter of performing perfectly in English, or even Gaelic, nor was it a matter of refusing to leave the medium of the mother tongue. She is associate editor of the journal Tourism and Cultural Change. As such these are grand narratives that make explicitly temporal claims in the sense that they conceptualise tourism with relation to Modernity and the historical development of the Western world in social and economic terms. These conditions may appear to concern epistemological questions. Not all Germans have seen Braveheart or read Macbeth. Rose believes that a strict division between the life of the field and the life of the researcher and a tight schedule and planning of ethnographic research cannot reach the heart of the researched culture. Our methodological texts were sullied by their material form.
We kept separate ethnographic journals and collected separate artefacts and documents. In short, it was not based on our sovereignty as individual researchers but in our relationality and mediated exchanges. One of the prime ways of focusing on material culture was, until recently, to concentrate on the action of exchange rather than on the objects themselves. Let us examine just three of these. It is worth elaborating here, but with a note of caution. Despite these conceptual questionings, the story of a differentiated Modernity, that most periodising and spatialising of stories, has created a lens through which many sociological analyses have been refracted. But we do wish to argue both for an interdisciplinarity that, whilst respecting the integrity of tradition, takes the different disciplinary influences in tourism studies to their outer edges in an attempt to live with and through tourist phenomena.
The study of contemporary tourism needs the micro-empirical study of social and cultural practice to understand exchange as a contextually embedded notion. What are the links between the anticipation of new worlds and experiences and the instruction manual? It is a guiding literature, it takes the imagination travelling to 80 Packing the Travel Bag specific places, casting the modern reader in a variety of traveller-guises, as Cunningham outlines above. Travel bags trigger not only narratives but also cultural change consequently changing their own biographies for new meanings. And in terms of the latter, it provides us with a concept whose dimensions and machinations can be grounded and articulated through the details of empirical study. According to such readings, all political, social, cultural and intellectual life becomes an epiphenomenon of the economic apparatus, reduced to the role of ideology and blinding large segments of society to the conditions of their dependence and exploitation. With regard to the authentic Other for instance, the role of time is clear.
My new digital camera disliked the seawater and bled green stuff before packing up. Chapter 3 of this first Part deals in greater detail with questions of method and methodology. In other words, one form of reflexivity is found in the things people do without thinking, habitually. Ingold, 1993: 103 This interagentivity, as Ingold 2000 terms it, is, we may argue, at the heart of oral tourist narratives. It allows us to move in and out of other European languages without leaving the predominantly Anglophone context of home. From this perspective, it becomes germane to ask what other forms of exchange, apart from those of the commodified market, might exist within the tourist arena? This means two things in terms of its theorisation. It also spoke of her education and her use of a fluent German, marked by living in the south.
Humans are the story telling packers of culture and anticipators of experiences in new spatio-temporal relations while their packing and reading guidebooks, which are presented as devotional texts, are the symbolic grieving for what has been left behind during travel. Postmodern analyses of tourism attempt to pick apart this knotting together of tourism, commodified exchange relations and the search for authenticity. When we come to examine the contents of our metaphorical travel bags, we are not rifling through stuff to find the quintessential German, Italian or American objects. Alison Phipps is senior lecturer and Director of the Graduate School for Arts and Humanities at the University of Glasgow, where she teaches anthropology and languages. Packing is a physical activity involving grunts and groans and material goods. Whatever the escape, the work—leisure binary, itself a modern idea, compared, say to premodern notions of work and rest in dialectical tension, shapes many a tale about the position of the tourist subject in Modernity. We then described how travel bags trigger a range of opportunities for and taxonomies of narrative exchange, circulating widely.
We would particularly like to thank our editor Mike Robinson. While tourist life is characterized by a variety of materialities leading to intercultural encounter, diversity and creativity of material and emotional exchanges lead to particular stories which have social, temporal and formative roles in everyday tourist life. We can and have to read old stories in fresh ways, as Bauman 1998: 5 reminds us: Why Tourism Matters 5 Not asking certain questions is pregnant with more dangers than failing to answer the questions already on the official agenda; while asking the wrong kind of questions all too often helps avert eyes from the truly important issues. Money is a profoundly symbolic phenomenon that shapes and is shaped by its social and cultural environment, and which as such has important moral qualities to it. Communitas gives rise to dialectic of reconciliation between conformity and autonomy and reflexivity towards the alternatives.
At some point, long after reaching total exhaustion, everything has been stowed away. The material presence of another human being engaged in the same action meant that narratives of the field occurred and were shared constantly in this milieu. Miller argues that the long-standing debate between these two forms of exchange might well have run its course because the opposition can be so easily turned on its head. In practice, the ability to mobilise so many different modes and moods in writing further serves to establish the authority of the ethnographic voice, in an age which claims to privilege multivocality, and which gives cultural capital to those capable of mobilising evidence of their creative and reflexive practice. A key characteristic of Modernity is differentiation: the creation of public and private spheres, divisions between the world of work and the world of leisure inter alia. And what are the wider ramifications of these intercultural relations? We experienced a wide variety of travel bags, in many different ways and in many states of readiness. The physical objects end up in the travel bag and the less tangible cultural aspects like languages, attitudes, education, knowledge, research, reading, stories and traditions all are bagged in memory, mind, experience and the body, forming a cultural baggage.
We found our talk and our feelings to be tormented by the need for form , the need to bring structure to the seeming uncontrollability of the exchanges that we had been experiencing. In other words, they are subject both to practical knowledge-in-action and to imaginative knowledge-in-action. The authors have concluded that the boundary between work and leisure, gifting and commodity exchange, dystopia and utopia or assimilation and cynicism are not so clear but very blurred and crisscrossed. We are interested in the practical aspects of dwelling alongside objects, memories, language systems, myths, and the ways these interact to form relations. However, working together gave us the opportunity to have discussions and tell stories of what we observed and the events in which we participated.
What is interesting about these notions, in comparison to the monocausal readings of the base-superstructure notion, is that they theorise consumption and its attendant social and economic relations, The Give and the Take 19 within a cultural frame of analysis where ideological interests come into play. Our intent in so doing is to bring the invisible practices of ethnography to the fore. Instead we treat intercultural communication by and large phenomenologically. Pack your dancing shoes in case you end up at a ceilidh! It is about temporarily removing possessions from their home, it is not an activity that is savoured, where newly found objects are lovingly turned over and admired amidst the flood of memories from their acquisition on a journey. Box 1 Positions in the tourism literature These lists can be used to construct exactly the kinds of sweeping pictures of the works that constitute a literature on tourism of which one might be critical, in the same way as we have been critical of MacCannell's research. Form, according to Williams 1977 , always has an active material base. Packed material, the agency and the symbolic meanings and interpretations that accrue to stuff, in the tourist context, is the focus of this chapter.
To travel without history, understanding of other ways of life, of festivals, languages, of geography, cult figures and literature is to be impoverished and potentially at risk of losing the investments of time, money and pleasure. On the one hand, it is pertinent to explore the manner in which social lives have things, and the role of objects in the construction of social identities as part of which we might include the tourist identity. Glendenning, 1997: 238 In sociological circles, however, the reduction of tourism to a direct outcome of economic production is problematic. But all the time, material life continued in almost unnoticed, intimate ways, piling, accumulating, burning, breaking, moulding and shaping, giving and receiving. The ways in which we do tourism and the places in which we are tourists raise practical, material and emotional questions about tourist life. Through our focus on reflexivity we are working, at least in this chapter, with thin descriptions, with grey areas of what is not part and parcel of the ethnographic life. Choosing Scotland as our focus enables us to enact several positions.