The dynamics of anti-tourism

Type: Paper
Sponsor Groups: Recreation, Tourism, and Sport Specialty Group, Political Geography Specialty Group
Poster #:
Day: 4/12/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Astor Ballroom II, Astor, 2nd Floor
Organizers: Michael Clancy, Jim Butcher
Chairs: Michael Clancy


In 2017 activists in several venues (Barcelona, Venice, Palma de Mallorca, Amsterdam, Bhutan, Dubrovnik, to name a few) launched local campaigns against tourists and tourism. In August, UNWTO Secretary General Taleb Rifai called the rise in anti-tourist sentiment is “a very serious situation that needs to be addressed in a serious way.”

What is behind these actions and how do we best understand them? Are they simply a reaction to perceived ‘overtourism’ (a term widely adopted in the media this year)? Do they imply a disillusionment with, or critique of, mass tourism’s cultural influence? Are they best understood as criticism of certain types of tourism – cruise tourists, casinos, mega-events? Do the very diverse forms of anti-tourism contain a common thread? Are they motivated by a desire for resources, recognition, growth or de-growth?

While some attention has been given to opposition to specific forms of tourism (Boykoff, 2011; Briassoulis, 2011; Cox, 1993) we need a deeper understanding of the various forms and manifestations of anti-tourism as well as the impact such movements have. This session seeks papers that address opposition to tourism of all kinds, which might include:

• Reactions to perceived ‘overtourism’
• Anti-tourism and cultural identity
• Controversies over resource use: tourism and recreation versus other uses
• Disputes among tourists over access and predominant forms of tourism within a given site (e.g. backpacker tourists vs. coach tourists)
• Opposition to specific types of tourism development: casinos, cruise tourism, the Olympic games, sex tourism
• Anti-tourism as a new social movement
• Historical evolution of anti-tourism
• The impact of anti-tourism movements on tourism destinations
• Tourism and the ‘right to the city’

Boykoff, J. (2011). The Anti-Olympics. New Left Review, (67), 41–59.
Briassoulis, H. (2011). Opposition to golf-related tourism development: an interpretivist analysis of an online petition. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 19(6), 673–693.
Cox, T. R. (1993). Before the casino: James G. Scrugham, state parks, and Nevada’s quest for tourism. Western Historical Quarterly, 24(3), 332.


Type Details Minutes Start Time
Presenter Jim Butcher*, Canterbury Christ Church University, Contemporary ‘anti-tourism’ in historical context 15 8:00 AM
Presenter Paolo Giaccaria*, University of Turin, Francesca Zanutto, University of Turin, For the sake of place authenticity: tourists versus migrants in anti-tourism discourses. 15 8:15 AM
Presenter Raphael Pieroni*, University of Geneva, Switzerland, Patrick Naef, University of Geneva, Switzerland, The urban night as a touristic attraction: from slumming to neoslumming 15 8:30 AM
Presenter Juan Rivero*, Barnard College, Contesting Coney Island's "Uniqueness": Drawing the Line Between Development and Loss 15 8:45 AM
Presenter Carmen Mínguez*, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Macia Blazquez-Salom*, Universitat de les Illes Balears, Asuncion Blanco-Romero*, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, Ivan Murray, Universitat de les Illes Balears, Tourism restructuring of the city 15 9:00 AM
Discussant Fabian Frenzel University of Leicester 20 9:15 AM

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