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Department of Anthropology and Sociology

Anthropology of travel and tourism A

Course Code:
Unit value:
Year of study:
Year 2 or Year 3
Taught in:
Term 1

The course aims to (a) place the anthropological study of travel and tourism within the mainstream of anthropological and social theory  (b) explore the historical roots of  travel and tourism (c) establish the primacy in the anthropology of tourism of good ethnography (e) ground the course in awareness of the global political economy of travel/tourism (f) appreciate the policy implications of the subject and to develop a critical overview of the potential of anthropological insights into consultancy in tourism strategy and policy (g) explore the contributions of the field to understanding of consumerism (particularly with regard to space and place) in contemporary capitalist societies.


Introduction to Social Anthropology (151801001)

Objectives and learning outcomes of the course

At the end of the course, students should be able to demonstrate that they have:

  1. A thorough understanding of the scope of the anthropology of travel and tourism and the capacity confidently to navigate through the processes of its historical configuration.
  2. A wide-ranging ethnographic grounding in the field.
  3. An appreciation of the multi-disciplinary nature of social scientific studies of travel/tourism and also the specific contributions to the field made by anthropologists.
  4. The capacity critically to evaluate the role of anthropological insights in tourism related development policy advice and consultancy.
  5. An appreciation of the contributions of the anthropology of travel/tourism to more general anthropological efforts to link global and local political economies of spaces and places.  


11 weeks - 1hr lectures and 1hr seminar/tutorials per week

Method of assessment

One unseen written paper - 70%
One essay - 30% (2500 words)