THE CULTURAL TOURISM. A DIFFICULT DEFINITION.
Posted by Mahmood Poonja on December 4th, 2019
THE CULTURAL TOURISM. A DIFFICULT DEFINITION.
Even if it might seem like an apriorism, defining cultural tourism, it would mean being able to limit all the interactions between tourism and culture. Therefore, it is difficult to accept, if a closer approach is sought between both areas, a concept that can cover the whole of this relationship. Perhaps, we should start by avoiding surnames to the word tourism. Understanding a cultural tourism leads us to assume that a consumer of sun and beach tourism - this time with two last names - does not or cannot do any cultural activity or, on the other hand, to determine what type of tourism is not cultural. A broader vision, beyond the marketing specialties or the objectives of the people, would lead us to consider tourism as a versatile instrument, adaptable to multiple perspectives and intentions. It would therefore be logical to establish a kind of graduation of the culturality of a trip based on the motivations of the subject and the options that his travel journey has. It would be necessary to determine, in a hypothetical process of quantification of use and enjoyment of cultural assets, which is the degree from which we can call a cultural experience a cultural experience. Just as in economics we talk about a profitability threshold, we would have to try here threshold of culturality. This imprecision, based on the so repeated breadth of concepts and the difficulty of establishing the connection points puts us in a very skeptical position on the usefulness of the use of the denomination cultural tourism.
It would be absurd, however, to try to affirm that cultural tourism as a market reality does not exist. So much so that, with this meaning, many tourist flows are cataloged, some as paradoxical as any trip to a European capital, except if traveling on business. In an Eurocentric vision, the association of classical cultural contents of Europe with cultural tourism is immediately assumed, while, curiously, trips to Africa or to many places in Latin America are unfailingly classified as adventure tourism. Obviously, no one has established a code that determines these qualifications, although they do not fail to show a certain - and tendentious - way of thinking regarding the cultural value of the offer of one and other places on the planet.
The European Association for Tourism and Leisure Education (ATLAS) defines it as "the movement of people towards cultural attractions outside their place of habitual residence, with the intention of accumulating new information and experiences to meet their cultural needs." Naturally, when defining the concepts of cultural attractions and cultural needs, the definition takes on larger or smaller dimensions. It does not cease to underlie in this and in other similar definitions an assumption, not explicit, that relates culture only with very significant elements of heritage and with the most selected expressions of culture. At least, it is difficult to guess if the displacements of young people to attend a ska concert would be included in this meaning. which relates culture only with very significant heritage elements and with the most select expressions of culture. At least, it is difficult to guess if the displacements of young people to attend a ska concert would be included in this meaning. which relates culture only with very significant heritage elements and with the most select expressions of culture. At least, it is difficult to guess if the displacements of young people to attend a ska concert would be included in this meaning.
The apparent virulence with which this mercadologica character of the cultural tourism meaning is sustained here has its origin in the verification of the risks of giving it other dimensions. There are many experiences, especially in developing areas, which are carried out under the name of cultural tourism only because their contents have a background based on indigenous cultural attractions, without specifying, beyond, a market strategy that really locates tourism products in the commercialization circuits that have to make them economically viable. When the whole process is not completed, many of these experiences are led to failure or simply testimonial development results. In short, creating routes and itineraries with cultural content is not cultural tourism, but only the first part of a project that should culminate in serious strategies.
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About the AuthorMahmood Poonja
Joined: December 4th, 2019
Articles Posted: 3
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