The allure of the chocolate box: competing narratives of attraction

Voase, Richard (2011) The allure of the chocolate box: competing narratives of attraction. In: Tourism and Rural Identities Symposium, 16 September, 2011, University of Lincoln.

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Abstract

“The reading and production of nature is something that is learnt. It is a cultural process and varies greatly between different societies, different periods and different social groupings within a society”. Thus spake Macnaghten and Urry (1995, p.19), arguing that the attraction of the rural is a social construction. The paper examines current social and cultural trends, and whether they are leading to a re-evaluation of the allure of ‘nature’. One the one hand, a continued and continual spectacularisation of society should mean that signifiers of ‘approved’ rurality – the stuff that chocolate box lids are made of – are secure in the public affection. On the other hand, indications of a growing interest in narrative suggest a resurgence of curiosity about chocolates, rather than the box. Drawing a parallel with the re-invention of industrial cities as destinations for leisure visits in the 1980s, a range of possible outcomes in terms of revised readings of the rural will be offered. Multiple outcomes may be likely, just as, as argued previously by this author, opposing modes of consumption can arise from one identical causal process of cultural change (Voase, 2002).

References

Macnaghten, P. & Urry, J. (1998) Contested Natures, London: Sage

Voase, R. (2002) Rediscovering the imagination: investigating active and passive visitor experience in the 21st century, International Journal of Tourism Research, 4 (5) 391-399.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Presentation)
Additional Information:“The reading and production of nature is something that is learnt. It is a cultural process and varies greatly between different societies, different periods and different social groupings within a society”. Thus spake Macnaghten and Urry (1995, p.19), arguing that the attraction of the rural is a social construction. The paper examines current social and cultural trends, and whether they are leading to a re-evaluation of the allure of ‘nature’. One the one hand, a continued and continual spectacularisation of society should mean that signifiers of ‘approved’ rurality – the stuff that chocolate box lids are made of – are secure in the public affection. On the other hand, indications of a growing interest in narrative suggest a resurgence of curiosity about chocolates, rather than the box. Drawing a parallel with the re-invention of industrial cities as destinations for leisure visits in the 1980s, a range of possible outcomes in terms of revised readings of the rural will be offered. Multiple outcomes may be likely, just as, as argued previously by this author, opposing modes of consumption can arise from one identical causal process of cultural change (Voase, 2002). References Macnaghten, P. & Urry, J. (1998) Contested Natures, London: Sage Voase, R. (2002) Rediscovering the imagination: investigating active and passive visitor experience in the 21st century, International Journal of Tourism Research, 4 (5) 391-399.
Keywords:nature, cultural process, rurality
Subjects:N Business and Administrative studies > N830 UK Tourism
Divisions:College of Social Science > Lincoln Business School
ID Code:5536
Deposited By: Richard Voase
Deposited On:16 May 2012 06:18
Last Modified:16 May 2012 06:18

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